Survivors of the NonMonetary Ongoing Great Depression, Recycling Poverty Into the Next Generation in Africa
|Thinking about the future of Africa|
NonMonetary poverty is a permanent reality for Africa’s progress in literacy and education, life expectancy and health, freedom from violence.
The picture on African poverty inequality is complex. Seven of the 10 most unequal Countries in the world are in Africa, most of them in southern Africa. Because of population growth throughout Africa, many more people are monetary and nonmonetary poor. Many aspects of Africa’s well-being cannot be appropriately priced measured in dollars and cents. The ability to read and write, longevity and good health, security, political freedoms, social acceptance and status, and the ability to move about and connect without the fear of violence are examples of the ongoing great depression.
|Women living in a IDP's camp|
NonMonetary dimensions of poverty in Africa; income fails to provide a complete picture of Africa's well-being.
Education can expand people’s capabilities. It helps people access and digest information and knowledge. Doing so requires at a minimum being literate. Compared with 1995, adult literacy rates are up by four percentage points and the gender gap is shrinking. More than half the population is illiterate in seven countries, almost all of them in West Africa. Niger (with an adult literacy rate of only 15 percent) and Guinea (where the rate is just 25 percent) have the lowest literacy levels in Africa. At the other extreme, literacy levels exceed 90 percent in Equatorial Guinea and South Africa, and they exceed 70 percent in some poor and fragile countries as well, such as Eritrea and Zimbabwe. Despite substantial improvement in school enrollment, the quality of schooling is often low and more than two in five adults are still illiterate.
A widely used measure of the ability to live a long and healthy life is life expectancy at birth. It provides a comprehensive reflection of the various factors that affect health and mortality. Children in poor, rural households with undernourished mothers are 20 percent more likely to be stunted. Newborns can expect to live six years longer and the prevalence of chronic malnutrition among under five-year-olds is down six percentage points to 39 percent. Even so, at 57 years, life expectancy in the region remains well below the average rate for the world, 70.9 years.
The ability to live free from violence affects people’s survival, dignity, and daily life. Insecurity significantly reduces the choices a person can make, specialty with voting rights and personal safety. After years of multiple large-scale conflicts and civil wars election-related violence, extremism, terror attacks, drug trafficking, maritime piracy, and criminality have been growing. Wars are increasingly being fought by armed insurgents on the periphery of factionalized and militarily weak states, such as the Arab and Tuareg uprisings in Mali and Boko Haram in Nigeria. West Africa has emerged as a key transit point in the trafficking of narcotics between Latin America and Europe, and piracy has expanded in the Gulf of Guinea. Africa has 54 countries, there are 15 African countries fighting wars and involved with perpetual terrorism violence. Sadly 27 percent of people on the African continent are directly affected by bloodshed, mayhem and post traumatic stress.
|Long walk home|
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