Namibia Profile

Namibia, with its population of just over two million people, is located in southern Africa and borders the Atlantic Ocean on its west, Angola and Zambia to its north, Botswana to its east and South Africa to its south and east.

Namibia is about three times the size of the United Kingdom and the Namib Desert that rolls along its coast is deemed to be the oldest desert in the world with sand dunes higher than any where else on the planet. Most of the country is indeed desert, or semi desert, with dry rivers and scare water resources making it a country with a very low population density, just 1.4 people to every square mile.

Namibia became a German protectorate in 1884 and remained a German colony until the end of the first world war when the League of Nations made it a South African mandate. Those familiar with South African history will know that at that time it was ruled by whites and its apartheid policy was extended to Namibia in 1948. This and other authoritarian South African laws led to general unrest and the nationalist South-West Africa People's Organization (SWAPO) started a guerrilla war against South African that lasted from 1966 to 1990 when on 21st March, Namibia became an independent nation as the Republic of Namibia.

Like so many African nations, Nambia faces many problems, not least the steady proliferation of HIV/AIDS which is estimated to affect 25% of the entire population leaving 60,000 children orphaned ~ accounting for 50% of all orphans in the country. It is hard to imagine bring brought up in a country where 17.5% of the entire child population is an orphan and where most adults die shortly after their 50th birthday. Namibia is the second least densely populated country in the world and encompasses both the Kalahari and the Namib Desert. 50% of the population live under the poverty line. It will sound strange, but one factor disadvantaging children in Namibia is the lack of any birth certificate. Without such a document children cannot prove their nationality and identity and therefore become more at risk of trafficking.


Namibia Profile

Namibia Profile

Namibia Profile

Namibia Profile


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Namibia Profile

Child trafficking is a known problem in Namibia, and whilst outlawed, is rarely enforced and records do not appear to be kept. Ironically despite the fact that over 80% of Namibian children are now born in hospital, some 40% do not have a birth certificate, partly due to the practise of the father's family naming the child, which can take place some time after the child has left hospital due to local custom. The problem is even more widespread within ethnic groups such as the San, a nomadic group who will often sign documents with their thumb print causing difficulty in proving any child is theirs. For more about Namibia check the information articles above.

Human Development Index Namibia

Human Development Index for Namibia 1980 - Present

The HDI (Human Development Index) is measured by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) and the World Bank and is based upon the life expectancy, literacy, access to knowledge and living standards of a country. Today Namibia is considered a stable democracy and is in 128th place out of 186 countries and territories in 2013 when ranked in terms of life expectancy, literacy, access to knowledge and the living standards of a country.


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