The 2011 Human Development Report, launched by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) late last year, lists Zimbabwe at 173 out of 187 countries. It is also listed among the 45 nations ranked under the ‘Low’ human development title.
The highest in the HDI Report for 2011 is Norway, followed by Australia, The Netherlands and the US. At the bottom of the list is the Democratic Republic of the Congo (187). Zimbabwe meanwhile is ranked lower than countries like Sudan and Afghanistan, while even Libya, which is still recovering from the revolution that ousted Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, is listed at number 63 under the ‘High’ human development ranking.
The HDI report links human development with global sustainability, arguing that such sustainability “can be most fairly and effectively achieved by addressing health, education, income, and gender disparities”
“Despite the human development progress of recent years, income distribution has worsened, grave gender imbalances still persist, and accelerating environmental destruction puts a ‘double burden of deprivation’ on the poorest households and communities,” the report says.
The MDC-T’s Bulawayo East MP, Tabitha Khumalo, said that the basic rights of Zimbabwe’s public are not being addressed, calling the country’s ranking “totally unacceptable.” She said in Zimbabwe’s particular case, with its wealth of natural resources, there should be no excuse to rank so low on the scale of human development.
“It is sad that any country should be so low on such a scale in this day and age, but Zimbabwe, which has such wonderful natural resources like diamonds, it is just unacceptable,” Khumalo said.
Khumalo was speaking just hours after visiting with homeless people in her constituency, calling the conditions “appalling.”
“They have no running water, no food, terrible health, and not even the means to get to free clinics. It is so sad that people face such a plight when we could harness our natural wealth and develop our country,” Khumalo said.
When asked about the government’s priorities in terms of human development, Khumalo said that the priority must be “the needs of the majority, not the wants of the few.”
She added that development, even in terms of the most basic needs, could be easily catered for with money from Zimbabwe’s diamond industry.
“This could be solved with government accessing funds from Chiadzwa, These resources must be tapped into and prioritised for the country’s development,” Khumalo said. SW Radio AfricaPost published in: News