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Today I’ll present my findings on Botswana at the Africa Conference of Berlin Missionary Society. The conference is being held for the 190th anniversary of the society. I was asked to present an overview on certain socio-economic topics. My key findings, as a summary:
- Botswana is a peaceful nation and a constitutional state which has developed from one of the poorest countries in the world to a middle income country.
- Freedom rights are in all effective and – compared to other African nations – on a high level.
- Participation is possible, but civil society is still to gain ground in the political sphere. Most, yet not all, government documents can be viewed. From local to national level deliberation is leading principle, aiming at consensus but leaving those behind not represented.
- The government distributes the immense mineral revenues indirectly by providing public goods like schools and a health system. Citizens are eligible for free land. Yet wealth distribution is highly unequal.
- Lutheran churches are still divided. The traditional Christian religious denominations are being challenged by African initiated churches.
- Harmful traditions are hardly known, but violent crimes against women and discrimination against the ethnic minority of the San and against people living with HIV/AIDS are issues to pay close attention.
My presentation in full lenth:
For those interested, you’re invited to join my (almost) daily Botswana media monitor on Twitter:
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