Prosperity and poverty
Namibia is a beautiful country with an impressive flora and fauna that attracts many tourists. But that’s only one aspect. Apart from the tourists, the country’s poverty is often evident. Life in the townships, where mostly the poor black population lives, is not what tourists see on photo safaris. But that is also the reality of this African country.
The reasons for these black settlements lie in the history of Namibia. In the meantime, the situation of many people here has at least improved. Although they still live in poverty, schools have been built, a water supply has been set up and much more.
During the time of the South African mandate over Namibia, the apartheid policy of the neighboring state also prevailed. In the 1950s housing estates emerged, the black population settled in the outer boroughs of the big cities. These are the townships. The colonial rulers secured the good residential areas within the cities. Even if there is no longer any official apartheid, the traces of this long time are visible. Even today, the everyday life of many people takes place here. In the capital Windhoek this area is called Katutura. That means “the place where we don’t want to live”.
Inequality in Namibia
Prosperity is very unevenly distributed in Namibia, more unevenly than elsewhere. Children in Namibia live very differently. Children of wealthy parents attend good schools and also receive a good education. The children of the poor Namibians have a much worse chance of later leading a good life.
Poverty is often passed on from generation to generation. There are also big differences between the capital Windhoek and the regions in the north of the country. The people here are far worse off than in the capital. But the country urgently needs many well-trained people who can take it forward.
Kindness and skepticism
Many Africans are very open to people from foreign countries. Visitors are usually met with great hospitality and are warmly welcomed. But in Namibia many people notice a reluctance that they are not used to in Africa. This is due to the many bad experiences that the local population had, especially with the white “visitors”.
Because they oppressed, exploited, beaten and often even killed. In this way, a white minority secured its power over the black majority of the population. And despite the country’s independence since 1990 and the same legal situation, many white farmers still treat their black workers like slaves. The consequences of the longstanding apartheid policy can still be felt today.
Eating in Namibia
Black Forest cake in Namibia?
Yes, you read that right, a popular dish or, better still, a pastry in Namibia is Black Forest cake. But how does the Black Forest cake come to Namibia? That’s a long way to go. This is related to the country’s colonial past. In addition to the cherry cake in Namibia, there are many “typical” German dishes such as pork knuckle with sauerkraut, roulades or schnitzel.
Bread made according to old recipes
Many bakeries also sell bread based on old German recipes. So you can definitely buy black bread, whole grain bread and even rolls in Namibia. German bread and cakes are not only loved by Germans or tourists visiting Namibia, but also by many locals.
Of course, these dishes do not come from Africa, but the former colonial rulers left their mark not only on the architecture, but also within the food traditions.
But of course there is not only German food in Namibia, but also a diverse and mostly international cuisine.
Which dishes are originally from Namibia?
A traditional dish in Namibia is milipap, which is the maize porridge popular in Africa. This is served with anything, depending on where you are. Simple people in the country eat the porridge with vegetables, but also with meat, because a lot of meat is eaten in Namibia, a country located in Africa according to ehistorylib. Which one depends on your wallet. There are few Namibian dishes completely without meat, vegetarians have to leave this out. Sometimes the corn porridge is also mixed with sour milk.
Spiced sausages or crocodile meat?
In Namibia people like to grill and almost all meat ends up on the grill. Boerewors are a specialty, spiced sausages like our sausages. A stew called potjiekos is also popular. Here vegetables, meat or fish cook in a pot that has three legs and hangs in an open fire.
In Namibia there is a lot of cattle breeding on animal farms, so there is enough meat available. Usually it is cattle or sheep. But the meat of wild animals such as springboks or antelopes and even of zebras ends up in the pan. Ostrich and crocodile meat, which is not as fat as other types of meat, is considered healthy.
A specialty are thick caterpillars that are roasted over the fire or left to dry. Not only does the local population like to eat this, the Mopane caterpillars are also on the menu in restaurants.
Fast food has also found its way into Namibia
But other food traditions have also found their way into Namibia, so that not only the Black Forest cake is popular, but also American fast food. The well-known chains have branches in Namibia and in addition to hamburgers and fried chicken there are a lot of things that are not only quick and unhealthy, but above all attract the urban population, who adapt to our, often unhealthy lifestyle.