In 2008, the country ranked 6th (out of 48 sub-Saharan countries) in the African Ibrahim index, making it one of the most developed in Africa. Journalists Without Borders placed it in 25th place out of 169 countries in the world in 2007, which is why it is high in terms of press freedom. Foreign policy remains independent, and it has maintained close links with the countries that helped the most in the independence struggle: Cuba and Libya.
As a result of the global economic crisis, the country’s growth was negative by 0.7% in 2009. Namibia sought to offset the negative development by increasing the production of rare minerals. It remains one of the world leading countries in the production of uranium and diamonds.
In 2010, the lawsuit against members of the Caprivi Liberation Army continued. According to Countryaah, 117 members have been incarcerated since 1999, and it remains uncertain when the trial will be closed. Until then, 21 had died in police custody. The year before, a mass grave was discovered in northern Namibia, where the bodies of 30 people were suspected of being 30 San speaking men, who disappeared from the military custody in 1999.
In the cities of Otjievero and Omitara, a pilot study was conducted in the period January 2008 to December 2009 with citizen pay. The trial was funded by the German Protestant Church. It was based on the fact that every citizen of the cities was paid a monthly amount of 100 Namibian sections, corresponding to US $ 12. One of the purposes was to reduce general poverty. The results were very positive. Children’s attendance at school increased and malnutrition declined; general crime decreased by 42% and theft by 20%. Critics of citizen pay often argued that this phenomenon would cause laziness to flourish. This was not the case in the two experimental cities, where economic activity generally increased instead. At the same time, this led to a migration to the cities during the period, despite the fact that the migrants did not receive a direct share in the citizens’ salary.
In July 2012, Namibia recognized Palestine as a state. The country had already established diplomatic relations with Israel in 1994, despite Israel being the apartheid-controlled South Africa’s closest ally, while South Africa kept Namibia occupied. In January 2008, the Government of Namibia received a fax from the US State Department urging the country to be more positive towards Israel. It didn’t quite succeed. After Israel attacked Gaza in December 2008, Namibia made this statement: “Israel’s cold aggression and disproportionate use of violence is very unfortunate and will only lead to a further escalation of the violence.”
- AllCityPopulation: Find Namibia demographics including latest population, life expectancy, age structure, and urbanization.
In November 2014, presidential and parliamentary elections were held. The presidential election was won by Swapos Hage Geingob, who got 86.7% of the vote, while DTA’s McHenry Venaani had to settle for 5%. Swapo was given 77 seats in the parliamentary elections and thus an absolute majority in the 96-seat parliament. DTA had to settle for 5 mandates and 8 smaller parties got the remaining. Swapo’s monopoly on power remained almost total.
Finally, in September 2015, the Caprivi case was handed down. Thirty of the 65 accused were found guilty of high treason, 9 cases of murder and 90 murder trials. 32 were acquitted and immediately released, while 3 others were found guilty of other matters. Most of the accused stated that they had been tortured or mistreated in connection with their arrest. In his ruling, the judge ruled that he followed a 2001 Supreme Court order prohibiting the use of evidence produced during torture, coercion, intimidation or other illegal acts by the police.
In December 2016, a discussion began in the German Federal Day on the country’s recognition of the genocide it was responsible for in the first of the 20th century in Namibia. The motive for the debate was an exhibition on Germany’s bloody colonial history in Namibia. Germany had in 1884 begun its conquest of Namibia. In 1904, the Herero people revolted against the colonial lords. The Germans responded ruthlessly again by driving tens of thousands of Herero people out into the Kalahari desert, poisoning their wells, cutting off food supplies and mass-raping Herero women. Tens of thousands of Hereros were killed in the following years. Similar methods were then used against the Nama people. Observers expected that Germany would make a formal apology to the Government of Namibia in 2017 and pay compensation. But the idea was rejected by Herero Chief Rukoro, who rejected German checkbook diplomacy. «We will never make peace with the Germans or have their money. Our war continues, “Rukoro declared.