UNDP Report Says Africa Gained Dev’t Ground While New Inequalities Emerge

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Ena December 10/2019 The 2019 UNDP Human Development Report stated that African countries have made significant strides in advancing human development and gaining ground on primary education and health while new generation of inequalities that threaten to undermine further progress open up.

The report was launched today under the theme “Beyond income, beyond averages, beyond today: inequalities in human development in the 21st century.”

As the gap in basic living standards is narrowing with unprecedented number of people escaping, hunger and disease, the necessities to thrive have evolved, it added.

New inequalities are, however, becoming more pronounced, particularly around tertiary education, and seismic effects of technology and the climate crisis, the report stated, stressing that “inequality is not beyond solution.”

According to the report, “African countries find themselves at crossroads, facing the dual challenge of ensuring that those furthest behind make progress while paving the way for those further ahead to keep pace with the emerging requirements of today’s world.”

While poverty rates have declined in across the continent, progress has been uneven, the report revealed, and warned that “if current trends continue nearly 9 of the 10 people in poverty, which is more than 300 million, will be in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2030.”

Despite improved gender parity in education, African women and girls continue to face deeply entrenched challenges to their human development progress, the report noted.

The report finally recommended policies that go beyond income and are anchored in lifespan interventions starting even before birth.