Country - Botswana
Botswana Country Information
Botswana is a republic nation in the southern part of African continent. It is one of the few successful nations which showed rapid development and multifaceted progress in the recent four decades from the former plight of gruesome poverty and impoverishment. Since winning independence in 1966 from England, Botswana achieved remarkable prosperity economically and its banking system is regarded as practising advanced modus operandi, more or less on par with the developing nations. Botswana has maintained the tradition of holding presidential elections with unbroken regularity and is known for following sound fiscal policies.
Botswana is landlocked by all sides. Most of its western border and northern border is enveloped by Namibia and its total southern border and a part of south eastern border is shared by South Africa. The remnant eastern and north eastern border is common with Zimbabwe. The northern most tip, admeasuring about a few hundred meters, leads to Kazungala town in Zambia. A major part of Botswana is occupied by Kalahari Desert which forms 70% of the territory. The total population of 2.2 million seems thinly distributed over its land mass of 5.81 lakh sq.km. The sparse distribution of Batswana may be discerned in the light of the fact that the land area is comparable with that of France whereas the population is about 1/3rd of France.
The capital and the largest city of Botswana is Gaborone where the highest share, approximately ten percent of the total population lives in. The official languages are English and Setswana; though Setswana is a widely spoken dialect, English has understandably come to stay as the official language as a literal legacy of the erstwhile British rule. With optimum utilisation of mineral resources, the mining industry has been accounting for 40% the total revenue. Botswana government is seriously pondering about alternative sources of income since the natural deposits of diamonds and precious metals are expected not to last beyond 2029.
Botswana is rich with different kinds of certain unique wild grazing animals which attract the interests of zoologists and some international tourists. The huge central Kalahari game reserve was made a dwelling place for hybrid animals of deer family and bovine relation. Red hartebeest, springbok, oryx, wildebeest, eland, wild dog are more likely to be spotted in the grand park. The real hero of the region is the Kalahari Lion which fascinates the visitors effortlessly with its kingly countenance. Like the other African nations, Botswana is a natural home to a slew of wild animals. The endangered species of wild animals are protected with extra care to ensure a safe perpetuation of progeny and their ramifications.
The San people in the desert are a source of a wealth of knowledge about wild animals accumulated over at least 20,000 years. With their entire life exclusively dependent on wild animals, the San people are no inferior to well-educated zoologists who devoted most of their academic life on the study of certain specific animals endemic to the area.
Chobi National Park is another place where large herds of African elephants, zebras, wild buffaloes roam about freely in the vast grasslands unmindful of the rest of the world. The dark striped zebras are more conspicuous among the other animals and their majority has made them feature in the coat of arms of the country.
That the illiterate aborigines too can express their feelings through their own version of graffiti can be found on as many as 4500 rock paintings at Tsodilo Hills which found a place in the official recordings of UNESCO. A good mixture of man-made luxury and visit of wild life deep into the forests can be experienced through private safari camps. Thousands of elephants, zebras, giraffes moving about different herds is a rare sight to watch which gives us a more integral picture of life on earth. We can understand how deficient and incomplete our normal outlook of life on earth is and how much wild life is contributing to the biological activity on the planet we live.
Botswana also deserves praise for sustained development in spite of the near-total absence of water resources for agricultural purposes. Agriculture is solely dependent on rainfall. The Government made conscious efforts to concentrate on other alternatives such as excessive rearing of livestock both for internal consumption and export of animal produce, mining for diamonds, precious metal minerals, uranium, copper etc.
The Republic of Botswana has earned good international reputation of educating their people consistently. The literacy rate has mounted to from 69% in 1991 to 83% in 2008. The country allocates 21% of its expenditure on education and more emphasis is laid on improving vocational training and opportunities, though a lot needs to be done to attain reasonable standards in primary education and employment for youth.