SARUA’s aim is thus to strengthen the leadership and institutions of higher education in the southern African region
Situated in the southwest of the Southern African region, the Republic of Namibia gained independence from apartheid South Africa in 1990 (SACMEQ 2012). The country has a population of over two million people, with 87.5 per cent of the population being Africans, and whites and mixed races comprising 6 and 6.5 per cent respectively (CIA 2012). The Namibian economy depends heavily on the mining and processing of minerals for export. Mining accounts for 8 per cent of GDP, but provides more than 50 per cent of foreign exchange earnings. Current GDP per capita stands at US$6 700. Rich alluvial diamond deposits make Namibia a primary source for gem-quality diamonds and the country is the world’s fourth-largest producer of uranium. Namibia also produces large quantities of zinc and is a small producer of gold and other minerals. The mining sector employs approximately 3 per cent of the population. Namibia normally imports about 50 per cent of its cereal requirements and in drought years food shortages are a major problem in rural areas. The Namibian economy is closely linked to South Africa with the Namibian dollar being on par with the South African rand (African Development Bank 2009).