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State formation in Namibia : promoting democracy and good governance

Geingob, Hage Gottfried (2004) State formation in Namibia : promoting democracy and good governance. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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This dissertation examines significant events in the process of state formation in Namibia and provides an insight into the role played by various actors involved in shaping the evolution of Namibia as a state, such as the Namibians, their liberation movement SWAPO, successive colonizing powers (Germany and South Africa), OAU, the Frontline States, the international community, and particularly the United Nations. It is argued that the international actors' role in the process of state formation in Namibia was driven by their desire to ensure their continued influence in Namibia for their own benefit. Self-interest of the West in Namibia was driven by the geopolitical imperatives of the cold war, and preserving western economic interests. In Namibia, which was a settler colony, self-interest also gained a racial dimension as the West sought to protect the interests of white settlers. The case is made that impetus to resolve the Namibian question had to await a number of streams coming together - the disintegration of the Soviet Union changed the complexion of geopolitics; deeper involvement of the Cubans in Angola threatened South Africa; Constitutional Principles put forward by the Western Five (U.S.A., the United Kingdom, Germany, Canada, and France) ensured continued protection of the economic interests of the West and the protection of the interests of the settlers; and success of Namibians' struggle at the international fora and on the battlefield catalyzed the coming together of various streams. This constellation of events ensured Namibia's independence in 1990. The study also examines how Namibians sought to build a reconciled society out of ethnically and racially stratified, diverse and often antagonistic groups. This process was begun with the drafting of the constitution by the Constituent Assembly. The first government's initiatives to promote democracy and a policy of reconciliation, to improve the life condition of the previously disadvantaged groups through affirmative action, to encourage good governance, to promote a culture of human rights, and to build state institutions to support these policies have also been examined with a view to determining the nature of the state that evolved in Namibia. Finally, the study carries out a democratic audit of Namibia using Swedish normative tools.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law (Leeds) > School of Politics & International Studies (POLIS) (Leeds)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.411564
Depositing User: Ethos Import
Date Deposited: 17 Aug 2018 15:39
Last Modified: 17 Aug 2018 15:39
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/21090

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