Poverty Essay

3926 Words Dec 22nd, 2011 16 Pages
Chapter 1

1.1 Introduction

Having obtain its independence 21 years ago in 1990, Namibia which is situated on Africa’s south-western seaboard with neighboring countries Angola ,Botswana, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. With an annual population growth of 1.9% in 2009, it is estimated that the population is now currently at 2.1 million (see World Bank 2009). Namibia has a stable economy that according to the United Nations Development Programmed (UNDP, 2003) is second in sub-Saharan Africa in terms of per capita expenditure in the health sector.

Namibia being a “middle income” country is faced like most developing countries with the rising problem of poverty. It is estimated that about 38% of the population live in severe poverty
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With Khomas and Erongo regions being more developed (see Newaka, 2007, p.2) this could lead to migration of people to these regions in search of employment.

What exactly is poverty? How does one conceptualize the term poverty? Is the lack of income the main aspect of defining poverty? There are different views of how poverty is defined. “Human poverty is about deprivation of the most essential capabilities ,including leading along and healthy life, being knowledgeable ,having an adequate standard of living and participating in community life”(Millennium Development Goals, 2004,p.5). The world development report (2000/2001, p.1)interprets poverty as the result of economic, political and social process that interact with each other and frequently change each other in a way that exacerbate the deprivation in which poor people live.

The definition of poverty can be divided into, the relative concept of poverty and the extreme/absolute concept of poverty in two ways. “absolute poverty is claimed to be an objective definition based upon the notion of subsistence .subsistence is the minimum needed to sustain life and so being below subsistence level is to benders experiencing absolute poverty because one does not have enough to live on .”(Alcock, 1993, p.59). Whereas the relative poverty concept as mentioned in

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