Namibia, Land of the Brave

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Namibia, Land of the Brave
Coat of arms of Namibia.svg

National anthem of  Namibia
Lyrics Axali Doëseb
Music Axali Doëseb
Adopted 1991

"Namibia, Land of the Brave" is the national anthem of Namibia. The anthem was written by Axali Doëseb, who was the director of a traditional music group from the Kalahari desert. Doëseb was chosen to write the anthem after winning a contest held after Namibia became independent in 1990.


Namibia's first anthem, albeit unofficial, was "Das Südwesterlied" while under German colonization as German South-West Africa.[1] When it became South-West Africa as a League of Nations mandate under the Union of South Africa, the national anthem was changed to "Die Stem van Suid-Afrika" to match South Africa's.[2] Following independence, "Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika" was provisionally adopted as the national anthem.[3][4] It was later decided that Namibia needed a unique anthem and a national competition was held to compose a new national anthem. The competition was won by Axali Doeseb with "Namibia, Land of the Brave".[3] The anthem was first played in public in a ceremony on the first anniversary of Namibia's independence from South Africa in 1991.[3] The similarity of the lyric's first-line phrase "Land of the Brave" to the end of "The Star-Spangled Banner", the national anthem of the United States, has been noted.[4]

The composition of the National anthem was supervised by Hidipo Hamutenya, then chairman of the National Symbols subcommittee.[5] In 2006 Hamutenya claimed that he authored the lyrics himself, "on the plane to Cuba". Doëseb denied the claim.[6]


The Parliament of Namibia passed the National Anthem of the Republic of Namibia Act, 1991. This confirmed "Namibia, Land of the Brave" as the national anthem of Namibia, made it an offense to insult the anthem with punishment upon conviction of up to five years imprisonment or up to a R20,000 fine or both, and allowed the President of Namibia to create regulations relating to it.[7]


English version

Namibia, land of the brave
Freedom's fight we have won
Glory to their bravery
Whose blood waters our freedom
We give our love and loyalty
Together in unity
Contrasting beautiful Namibia
Namibia our country
Beloved land of savannahs,
Hold high the banner of liberty
Namibia our Country,
Namibia Motherland,
We love thee.

German version

Namibia, Land der Tapferen.
Der Freiheitskampf ist gewonnen,
Ehre ihrem Mut,
Deren Blut floss für unsere Freiheit.
Wir geben unsere Liebe und Treue
In Einigkeit gemeinsam,
Kontrastreiches schönes Namibia,
Namibia unser Land.
Geliebtes Land der Savannen,
Haltet das Banner der Freiheit hoch.
Namibia unser Land,
Namibia, Mutterland,
Wir lieben Dich.

Unusually, there are no official lyrics in Afrikaans, the most widely spoken language of the country.

Unofficial Afrikaans version

Namibië, land van die dapper,
Vryheid veg ons gewen het.
Eer aan hul dapperheid
Wie se bloed ons vryheid wateren.
Ons gee ons liefde en lojaliteit
Saam in eenheid.
Kontrasterende pragtige Namibië,
Namibië, ons land.
Geliefde land van savannas,
Hou hoog die vaandel van vryheid.
Namibië, ons land,
Namibië, Moederland,
Ons is lief vir jou.


  1. ^ "Song evokes apartheid memories". Windhoek Observer. 2013-10-31. Retrieved 2014-05-02. 
  2. ^ The CVR Tourist Guide to Southern Africa. Chris van Rensburg Publications. 1970. p. 327. ISBN 0948253363. 
  3. ^ a b c "Namibia: Land of the Brave". Archived from the original on 2014-03-31. Retrieved 16 February 2010. 
  4. ^ a b "National symbols? What happened to the giraffe?". The Citizen. 1990-03-21. Retrieved 2014-05-02. 
  5. ^ "National Anthem of the Republic of Namibia Act, #20 of 1991". Government Gazette of the Republic of Namibia (321). Government of Namibia. 17 December 1991. 
  6. ^ Sibeene, Petronella (11 October 2006). "Dispute Over National Anthem's True Author". New Era. 
  7. ^ "Government notice" (PDF). Government Gazette. 1991-12-17. Retrieved 2014-05-02. 

External links

  • Namibia: Namibia, Land of the Brave - Audio of the national anthem of Namibia, with information and lyrics
  • National anthem of Namibia MIDI
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