Windhoek (pop. 114,500), capital and largest city of Namibia, as well as its commercial, administrative, and communications center. Windhoek was originally called Aigams (“hot water”)—a reference to the area's hot springs. In the late 1880s Germany occupied the city, but it was taken over by South African forces in World War I. Until Namibia's independence in 1990, the white government of South Africa ruled Namibia, and apartheid was strictly enforced. While the population of Windhoek is mostly black, the whites controlled the politics and economy of the city until 1990.
See also: Namibia.