Namibia

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People and Society of Namibia

Namibia has a very small population of just below 1.8 million people living in an area spread over 825,000 sq.km. A low growth rate ensures low density as the people live scattered across the country. There are 11 main ethnic groups in Namibia -about 50% of the them belong to the Owambo tribe and 9% to the Kavango tribe while the other important ethnic groups are the Herero, Damara, Nama, Caprivian, Bushmen, Baster and Tswana tribes.

Namibia also has a fair number of Europeans, either Germans or Afrikaaners living in the country. The tribes still follow a traditional life style, practicing their old crafts and working at the age old traditional occupations of subsistence farming, animal husbandry, hunting or fishing. In modern Namibia, most of the tribes have lost their traditional lands, and hence are looking towards urban professions and trades. The Bushmen of the San tribe live in small nomadic groups of 25-30 members, spending their time eking out an existence from hunting and gathering of food from the forests, even though they are part of an intricate but widespread trade network.

English and Afrikaans are the two official languages of Namibia but German and Portuguese are widely spoken in areas where the German and Portuguese influences were stronger. Indigenous languages spoken are Bantu origin languages like Owambo, Kavango, Herero, Caprivi and Tswana and the Khoisan languages spoken by Bushmen or San tribesmen and the Nama-Damara people.


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