Detailed Research on Namibia
Namibia is located in Africa (southern part) where the nation shares borders with nations as Botswana, Angola and Zambia, as well. On the same note, the Namibia borders the Atlantic Ocean on the Western and the nation shares some land borders with South Africa. Incidentally, the nation was colonized, by South Africa, and she gained her independence in 1990 following the Namibian war of independence. It is imperative to note that, Namibia is a member of the UN, as well as other international communities as Southern Africa Development Community, African Union and Commonwealth of Nations. Similar to other typical African nations, Namibia is characterized, by dry lands, and wet highland area. The dry lands were originally inhabited, by Namaqua, Damara and Bushmen. However, the original inhabitants were joined by immigrating Bantu communities, which introduced the unique expansions on the lands. The brief write up will examine extensive facts and information that are related to Namibia. The facts and information will be obtained from extensive and expansive research, which will focus on the various aspects of the nation.
Namibia is an African nation that has surpassed lots of other African nations in terms of political stability and development. The nation is substantially safe, and her cities are clean due to minimal pollution, as well as proper waste disposal. On the same note, Namibia is a modern nation with an admirable per capita income, which ranks second in the entire continent of Africa. Similarly, the nation`s population density is relatively low and perhaps the lowest in the world. Low population minimizes overexploitation of the natural resources due to population pressure. Namibia was branded the name German Northwest Africa during the colonial era of the European. During WWI, the territory of Namibia was seized, by South Africa from the Europeans. South Africa reserved the area as a protectorate until the time when Namibia fought for her independence. The guerilla war in Namibia was barked, by UN and eventually the nation gained her independence, in 1991.
The country is home to the hottest and driest and hottest deserts in the globe, the Namib Desert. Despite the fact that the Namib Desert is the oldest desert in the world, the desert has lots of breathtaking scenes and unimaginable beauty. The desert is habited, by thousands of species of animals and insects, which have adapted to the hot and dry environment over millions and millions of years (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1990). The conditions of the desert basically inhabitable, by humans thus the ecosystems and natural environment remain uninterrupted and intruded, by human settlement. Similarly, the desert provides attracts tourists from various continents earning the nation substantial amount of income.
Mineral mining and diamond mining are the key source of income for the nation. Other primary sources of income include game ranching and livestock ranching, tourism, commercial fishing and agriculture. Namibia has many small groups of citizens who command the economic environment of the nation. Most of the groups of citizens are characterized with Afrikaner and German backgrounds, as well. However, the governance of Namibia is firmly and safely under the rule of the black citizens of the nation. Blacks are the majority in Namibia and their numbers allow them command significant political influence and supremacy, in the nation. So far, the political operations and governance of the Namibia has succeeded in many ways. The nation has never experienced serious political or civil strife since independence thus making it one of the most peaceful nations in Africa (Epstein, 2007).
Although there are various dozens of tribal languages in Namibia, English is the official language, in the nation. English is the most popular language in the major towns and cities as most people use the language for business communication and social interactions. Namibia has a diverse and rich tribal background of her black citizens. The diversity pools different cultural practices and diversity in traditions, which make the nation unique and distinct among other nations. The colonial history of Namibia is fascinating as the nation remained a colony of South Africa for more than seven decades (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1990). Currently, the influence of South Africa on her colony is evidenced by expansive infrastructure as international airports in the Namibian capital (Windhoek) roads, railway and other social amenities, which surpass lots other African nations. On the same note, the nation enjoys lots of modern urban features as an electrical power grid, which is absolutely reliable. The modern features are extended to minor towns and cities all over the nation, as well some semi-rural areas.
Namibia has visible and tangible evidence of influence from Germany. The nation manufactures extremely fine beers, in her local industries, and these beers are supplemented with imported wines from South Africa and Europe, as well (Epstein, 2007). On the same note, tourists and locals are treated to the pleasure of classic styled restaurants, which portray the European styles of service (Hough & Van, 1989). The level of hygiene in Namibia is relatively higher than other places in Africa (Du et al, 2007). The aspect of hygiene and cleanliness is reinforced, by the fact that, the nation is not known to the western and Asian world.
Therefore, the rich varieties of tourist facilities, in the nation have never encountered excess tourists and visitors. Nonetheless, Namibia provides a distinct combination of outstanding wildlife encounters, friendly people, incredible desert scenery, and quality facilities.
An interesting fact about Namibians is that most of them are native herdsmen and ranchers who solely obtain their livelihood from the sale of domesticated, game species and domesticated livestock (Trans-boundary Mammal Project (Namibia), & Namibia, 2008). The source of revenue for the ranchers and herdsmen motivate the extreme hostility towards predatory species as hyenas, leopards and lions, which threaten the productivity and life of significant livestock as cattle sheep and goats (Republic of Namibia, 2008). Imperatively, the hostility towards the predatory species is more intense on lions than other cats as lions are the most destructive of all. The tribal pastoralists are the most notorious in killing lions as their efforts are supported and facilitated, by a Namibian NGO. The NGO supports the killing of predator lions with an aim of protecting other valuable and precious species as rhinos and elephants against poaching.
However, there are groups that protect the predatory cats as the cats are vital in attracting improved ecotourism to the nation. The basic approach of turning the predatory cats into valuable assets is selling the excess cats to other game reserves, in different parts of the world (Republic of Namibia, 2008). It is essential to highlight that lions in Namibia are utterly the healthiest animals in the African continent. These lions are immune to most ailments and physical conditions, which kill lions, in other parts of the continent (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1990). There is, however, a serious wastage of the economically and biologically valuable wildlife, in Namibia as lions that escape from parks are exterminated on sight, by ranchers and tribesmen. The problem emanates from poor management of the conflicts, which emerge between the lions and the community (Hough & Van, 1989). The government has adopted various approaches that will facilitate smooth resolution of the conflicts through a balanced consideration of both sides. Imperatively, the intentions to protect lions should not jeopardize the safety and livelihood of the Namibians.
The People and their Culture
Namibia has a diverse number of cultures, which are fairly distributed in the entire nation. An approximated 1.8 million people who reside in the nation forming a diverse population that is sparsely settled in various parts of the Namibia (Trans-boundary Mammal Project (Namibia), & Namibia, 2008). The majority of Namibians (70%) are dark skinned, and they belong to people who speak the Bantu languages. Such people include the Herero and Ovambo. Khoisan population is the largest in Namibia and Africa by extension, although there are other cultural minorities as Caucasians, colored blood people and Damara among others (Melber & Nordiska Africa institute, 2003).
The san people descend directly from foragers of Stone Age, as well as East Africa and Southern African`s indigenous inhabitants (Du et al, 2007). The San people were known to proceed using arrows with stone heads late into the 19th century, and these tools happen to have been invented by their ancestors. There is a possibility that the stone headed arrows symbolize an ancestral connection and beliefs of good luck (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, 1990). The majority of art (pre-historic), in Namibia was attributed to the San people despite the fact the San people abandoned both painting and engraving rock images (Epstein, 2007). The San nomads wandered the lands in groups where they built temporary shelters. Alternatively, the San people retained permanent ancestral territories, which provided shelter and protection. The san people enjoyed their time as hunters as gatherers, but the people were compelled to abandon their way of life, by land shortages (Melber & Nordiska Africa institute, 2003).
The Nama people are pastoralists, and they resemble the San people in numerous ways. However, these people are slightly different from the San due to their tall frames and slightly light skin. The Nama people express the same tongues as the San people as the two groups belong to the same group of language families (Republic of Namibia, 2008). The tongues are characterized, by slurred vowels and clicked consonants. Furthermore, the Nama are excellent fighters who involved the Herero to gain control of the watering points and grazing grounds in the pre-colonial period. The conflicts between the two groups of people were experienced even in the 19th century (Du et al, 2007).
Similar hostility was extended to the German rule as the Nama people launched a couple of armed rebellions against the rule. The second uprising, by the Nam against the German rule resulted massive killing of the members of the group (Epstein, 2007). Further, the colonial rule confiscated land belonging to the Nama people as a way of punishing the group for their hostility.
The next group of people who reside Namibia is the Damara people. The group of people share similar language with the Nama group, but their skin is darker than that of the Nama. Furthermore, the Damara are sturdier and taller than the Nama group. On the same note, the beliefs and culture of the Damara are marked differently from the rest of the groups (Hough & Van, 1989). The Damara`s ancestors were pure blacks who accompanied the people of Khoisan into Namibia. Imperatively, most of the Dara people left the Damaraland, and they live in the cities and towns, in the nation. The Damaras have had a fair share of political representation and leadership as the initial prime minister was a Damara and so was his successor
The Ovambo people built various kingdoms on the plains (flood plains) and most of the people of the group in the kingdoms. Constant and adequate food supply for the Ovamba people from agriculture have probably contributed to the magical population increase among the Ovambo people. The group has the highest number of individuals in Namibia (Melber & Nordiska Africa institute, 2003). The group supported the fight and acquisition of independence from South Africa. The political involvement of the Ovambo people produced the first president of the nation who served for a long time.
The group of people in Namibia whose culture is most renowned is the Herero. Women from the group clad in ankle length dresses, which conceal their entire body parts. Further, the women wear tight bodices, puffed sleeves that are long and high necklines (Hough & Van, 1989). The group adopted the dress style from the European fashions thus the dresses are regarded as traditional markers. The group was primarily nomadic, and cattle were regarded as sacred to the group. Finally, the German culture continues to influence Namibia long after independence (Du et al, 2007). The architectural designs of most urban building follow the German styles as steep roof, bay windows, turrets and embellished gables among others. Furthermore, the capital city of Namibia is flooded with German Restaurants.
Namibia encounters various issues providing health to her citizens. The public health care providers command the largest percentage of the entire health infrastructure, which amounts to 85% of the population. On the contrary, 15 % of the population depends on the private sector for medical services (Cubitt, & Owen-Smith, 1981). The health expenditures for both the private and public health claim more than 8.3% gross domestic product of Namibia. Although the nation has sophisticated health services, the services are not affordable and accessible to the poor. Therefore, poor patients continue to die, from treatable diseases to prohibitive health fees (Melber & Nordiska Africa institute, 2003). Further, specialized medication as organ transplant is reserved for the wealthy and services are limited to private hospitals. Therefore, lots of Namibians fail to get access to specialized medical services as organ transplant (Hough & Van, 1989).
With respect to the small population in Namibia, the doctor patient ratio is admirable, despite the fact that the number of doctors is relatively low. There are more than 340 clinics and hospitals and more than one thousand service points that are small compared to hospitals (Republic of Namibia, 2008). The only cardiac centers in the country are located in Windhoek, and the cardiac centers handle most of the heart related treatments in Namibia. Cases of alcohol abuse in Namibia are extremely high and the situation results to more than 10% of adult Namibians suffering from alcohol related ailments (Republic of Namibia, 2008). Further, the prevalence of skin cancer is the highest in Namibia to high cases of albinism and exposure to sunshine. Currently, there are more than 500 hundred cases of skin cancer in the entire nation. Further, HIV/AIDS epidemic is another serious peril to the wellbeing and life expectancy of lots of Namibians. More than fifteen percent of Namibian adults are HIV positive. Imperatively, there are other ailments that pose serious threats to the health of Namibians. The ailments include tuberculosis, leprosy, and malaria with 70%, 8% and 14.5% cases of infection respectively.
On the same note, education standards in Namibia are below expectation. Students are supposed to attend the compulsory ten years of education. However, most students drop out of school with minimum knowledge and few make it to tertiary level (World Bank, 2009). Further, teachers lack specialized training, which can enable the tutors disseminate knowledge to students with authority (Hough & Van, 1989). Furthermore, only 12% of all students who join school proceed to universities due to limited facilities and institutions of higher learning (Trans-boundary Mammal Project (Namibia), & Namibia, 2008).
Currently, the education system of Namibia is encountering lots of obstacles as the system is struggling to provide education to all people. Further, the performance of learners does not meet the standards, and the quality of teachers is not the best. The issues in the education system are being addressed through an improvement program, which aims at improving the education sector (Goamab, 2005). The improvement program is tailored to align the education system of the nation to become consistent with the needs and requirements of the Namibian population, as well as the Namibia`s vision 2030.
Finally, despite the fact that Namibia has earned the reputation of being named as a medium economy nation, the gap between the wealthy people and the deprived individuals is significantly high. The challenge emerges from gender indifferences, which cripple the efforts of women to gain economic emancipation. Further, minimum access to education and specialized training makes the situation worse (Melber & Nordiska Africa institute, 2003). However, the government has established structures, which make significant attempts to fix the challenges. Precisely, the government has addressed the entire structural problems in the health sector, education and income sectors, which affect human development. Imperatively, the challenges have continued to persist due poor implementation of the proposed policies, which are tailored to fix the challenges (Du et al, 2007).
As an alternative solution, the government should seek to design policies, which will streamline education, health and income in Namibia to ensure that every Namibia enjoys the privileges as the rich (Goamab, 2005). Regional development projects should be started with key concern to the expressed needs of the rural people. Further, teachers should be accorded specialized training to respond to the market demands in terms of knowledge.
The government of Namibia continues to pursue the principles of a free market, which are designed to promote job creation and commercial development. The principles will attract and pull the deprived Namibian citizens into the economic mainstream (Goamab, 2005). Further, the nation has gained membership to regional markets and market unions, which promote commerce and trade for the benefit of her citizens.
Namibia is an African nation that has surpassed lots of other African nations in terms of political stability and development. Namibia is a modern nation with an admirable per capita income, which ranks second in the entire continent of Africa. English is the most vocalized language in the major towns and cities as most people use the language for business communication and social interactions. The level of hygiene in Namibia is relatively higher than other places in Africa. An interesting fact about Namibians is that most of them are native herdsmen and ranchers who solely obtain their livelihood from the sale of domesticated, game species and domesticated livestock. An approximated 1.8 million people who reside in the nation forming a diverse population that is sparsely settled in various parts of the Namibia. The san people descend directly from foragers of Stone Age, as well as East Africa and Southern African`s indigenous inhabitants. The Nama people are pastoralists, and they resemble the San people in numerous ways. The Damara`s ancestors were pure blacks who accompanied the people of Khoisan into Namibia. The Ovambo people built various kingdoms on the plains (flood plains) and most of the people of the group in the kingdoms. The group of people in Namibia whose culture is most renowned is the Herero. The public health care providers command the largest percentage of the entire health infrastructure, which amounts to 85% of the population. Education standards in Namibia are below expectation. The gap between the wealthy people and the deprived individuals is significantly high. The government has established structures, which make significant attempts to fix the challenges. The government should seek to design policies, which will streamline education, health and income in Namibia to ensure that every Namibia enjoys the privileges as the rich.
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Du, P. J., Coetzer, T., & McKay, K. (2007). Namibia: A visual celebration. Cape Town: Struik.
Epstein, I. (2007). The Greenwood encyclopedia of children`s issues worldwide. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press.
Eriksen, T. L., Moorsom, R., & Nordiska Afrikainstitutet. (1989). The political economy of Namibia: An annotated critical bibliography. Uppsala: Scandinavian Institute of African Studies [Nordiska Afrikainstitutet] in cooperation with United Nations Institute for Namibia, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs.
Goamab, M. (2005). Macroeconomic challenges and the budget of Namibia. Namibia economic society. Retrieved from http://www.sarpn.org/documents/d0001529/.
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Melber, H., & Nordiska Afrikainstitutet, (2003). Re-examining liberation in Namibia: Political culture since independence. Uppsala: Nordic Africa Institute (Nordiska Afrikainstitutet.
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Republic of Namibia, (2008). A Review of Poverty and Inequality in Namibia. Central Bureau of Statistics National Planning Commission. Retrieved from http://www.undp.org/content/dam/undp/documents/poverty/docs/projects/Review_of_Poverty_and_Inequality_in_Namibia_2008.pdf.
Transboundary Mammal Project (Namibia), & Namibia. (2008). Background information and species management guidelines for Namibia`s rare and valuable wildlife. Windhoek: Transboundary Mammal Project of the Ministry of Environment and Tourism.
World Bank, (2009). Namibia: Country brief. Washington, D.C: World Bank.
Detailed Research on Namibia