Advertisement

The Namibian Basic Income Grant Pilot

  • Claudia Haarmann
  • Dirk Haarmann
  • Nicoli Nattrass
Chapter
Part of the Exploring the Basic Income Guarantee book series (BIG)

Abstract

Haarmann, Haarmann and Nattrass describe the context, origin and development of the world’s first Basic Income pilot, located in Otjivero, Namibia. They discuss the evidence gathered and criticisms of the pilot and its assessment. They show that the Basic Income had an immediate impact on poverty, and particularly on child malnutrition, and that it fostered new small scale local economic activity. They suggest that the assumption that poor people are incapable of using a cash grant developmentally, and that the political elite is reluctant to adopt a social policy that would constitute a right, have resulted in a nationwide Basic Income not being implemented. Factual evidence will never be sufficient on its own. Only political will would enable a Basic Income to be implemented.

References

  1. Basic Income Grant Coalition. (2008, November 3). Press statement. http://www.bignam.org/Publications/Press_release_response_to_NEPRU.pdf. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  2. Fergusson, J. (2015). Give a man a fish: Reflections on the new politics of distribution. Durham, MC: Duke University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Geingob, H. (2015b). Keynote address—National conference on wealth and redistribution and poverty eradication. (p. 6). Office of the President. http://www.gov.na/documents/10181/22710/KEY+NOTE+ADDRESS+BY+HIS+EXCELLENCY+HAGE+G+GEINGOB%2C+PRESIDENT+OF+THE+REPUBLIC+OF+NAMIBIA+NATIONAL+CONFERENCE+ON+WEALTH+REDISTRIBUTION+AND+POVERTY+ERADICATION+%282015+10+26%29/62643192-abcc-40b5-97d3-6114b0dfcf1a. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  4. Haarmann, C., & Haarmann, D. (Eds.). (2005). The Basic Income Grant resource book. Windhoek: Desk for Social Development (DfSD) of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Namibia (ELCRN).Google Scholar
  5. Haarmann, C., & Haarmann, D. (2012). Piloting Basic Income in Namibia—Critical reflections on the process and possible lessons. Paper presented at the BIEN Congress, Munich. https://basicincome.org/bien/pdf/munich2012/haarmann.pdf. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  6. Haarmann, C., & Haarmann, D. (2013). Namibia—The Basic Income Grant pilot project. In G. Axelsson Nycander (Ed.), Cash in the hand—Rights based social protection as a method of eradicating poverty and hunger (pp. 39–49). Stockholm: Church of Sweden and the Nordic Africa Institute. https://www.svenskakyrkan.se/default.aspx?id=1033438. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  7. Haarmann, C., Haarmann, D., Jauch, H., Shindondola-Mote, H., Nattrass, N., van Niekerk, I., et al. (2009). Making the difference! The BIG in Namibia. Windhoek: Desk for Social Development (DfSD) of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Namibia (ELCRN). http://www.bignam.org/Publications/BIG_Assessment_report_08b.pdf. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  8. Haarmann, C., Haarmann, D., Mote, H., & Jauch, H. (2011, July 15). The BIG debate in context: Facts and fiction about Otjivero. New Era. http://www.bignam.org/Media%20Reports/2011_07_15%20-%20New%20Era_11_07_15%20-%20The%20BIG%20Debate%20in%20Context%20-%20Facts%20and%20Fiction%20about%20Otjivero.pdf. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  9. Insight Namibia. (2016). Cabinet scorecards 2016. http://www.insight.com.na/cabinet-scorecards-2016/. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  10. Isaacs, D. (2007, August 8). Omitara goes BIG. The Namibian. https://www.namibian.com.na/index.php?id=30251&page=archive-read. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  11. Kisting, D. (2010, April 28). President rejects ‘money for nothing’. The Namibian. https://www.namibian.com.na/65399/archive-read/President-rejects-money-for-nothing–THE-Basic. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  12. Klocke-Daffa, S. (2017). Contested claims to social welfare: Basic Income Grants in Namibia. Sozialpolitik.ch, 2(2).  https://doi.org/10.18753/2297-8224-93.
  13. Melber, H. (2012). Democracy without a choice? Interest groups, advocacy and political behaviour in Namibia: A warning for South Africa? In H. A. Thuynsma (Ed.), Public opinion and interest group politics: South Africa’s missing links? Africa Institute of South Africa: Pretoria.Google Scholar
  14. NAMTAX. (2002). Proposal for a development grant to the poor financed out of a progressive expenditure tax on the affluent’. In C. Haarmann & D. Haarmann (Eds.) (2005), The Basic Income Grant resource book (pp. 19–29). Windhoek: Desk for Social Development (DfSD) of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Namibia (ELCRN).Google Scholar
  15. New Era. (2006a, August 11). Coalition persists on BIG, New Era. https://neweralive.na/posts/coalition-persists-on-big.
  16. New Era. (2006b, May 23). Govt. vetoes BIG—for now. https://neweralive.na/posts/govt-vetoes-big-for-now. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  17. Osterkamp, R. (2008). Basic Income Grant: A critical analysis of first results. NEPRU Quarterly Economic Review, 66. http://www.rowlandbrown-namibia.com/data/?wpfb_dl=235. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  18. Osterkamp, R. (2013a). Lessons from failure. D+C: Development and Cooperation. https://www.dandc.eu/en/article/disappointing-basic-income-grant-project-namibia. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  19. Osterkamp, R. (2013b). The Basic Income Grant pilot project in Namibia: A critical assessment. Basic Income Studies, 8(1), 71–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Shejavali, N. (2009, October 22). BIG is no joke, says BIG. The Namibian. https://www.namibian.com.na/59070/archive-read/BIG-is-no-joke-says-BIG-THE-Basic-Income-Grant. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  21. Smit, E. (2017, December 18). Military spending remains high. https://www.namibiansun.com/news/military-spending-remains-high2017-12-18. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  22. Weidlich, B. (2007, March 6). Geingob calls for Basic Income Grant. The Namibian. https://www.namibian.com.na/35559/archive-read/Geingob-calls-for-basic-income-grant-FORMER. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  23. Windhoek Observer. (2017, March 21). Geingob hints at cash component to food bank. http://www.observer.com.na/index.php/sports/item/7827-geingob-hints-at-cash-component-to-food-bank. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.
  24. World Bank. (2009). The World Bank: Data: Namibia. https://data.worldbank.org/country/namibia. Accessed 29 Jan 2019.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Claudia Haarmann
    • 1
  • Dirk Haarmann
    • 1
  • Nicoli Nattrass
    • 2
  1. 1.Centre for Social Science Research, University of Cape TownCape TownSouth Africa
  2. 2.School of Economics, University of Cape TownCape TownSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations