Chad is one of the world’s poorest countries. It is also a strongly segmented society, where the population feels greater affiliation with often antagonistic groups such as family, clan and ethnic group than with the country as a whole. Four out of five residents live in poverty (under US $ 2 per day). Only half of the population has access to clean water. Visit AbbreviationFinder to see the definitions of TCD and acronym for Chad.
Poverty and internal struggles throughout the period of independence have hardly improved social conditions. Illiteracy remains at a high level. Health care suffers from a severe lack of resources, and the general health situation is poor. Health care is poorly developed with only four hospital beds per 10,000 residents (2005) and four doctors per 100,000 (2004), and large sections of the population, mainly in rural areas, are entirely dependent on health care organizations. At just over every 10 births, qualified personnel are available. Malnutrition is common. More than 3 percent of the population aged 15-49 are estimated to be affected by HIV/AIDS. Gastrointestinal disorders as well as lung diseases, malaria and tuberculosis are other common causes of death. Of the state expenditure in 2009, 14 per cent went to health care.
Chad is also a distinct patriarchal society, where women are strongly subordinate to men. Genital mutilation (female circumcision) has been banned since 2002, but the practice is still widespread, albeit to varying degrees among the various ethnic groups. The right to own something, for example land, is basically non-existent for women. The proportion of girls allowed to attend school is significantly lower than the proportion of boys. This applies not least to secondary school, which can to some extent be explained by the fact that many girls enter into marriage before the age of 16. Only 5% of the country’s MPs are women.
Ndjamena, formerly Fort Lamy, the capital of Chad in Central Africa; 1.6 million residents (2012). The town is located on the variable, partially dried-up Chad island and near the border with Cameroon. It was built in 1900 as a French military post; only after Chad’s independence in 1960 did real urban growth begin, and it is now the country’s dominant center, politically and economically. The civil war of the 1980’s caused great destruction and many of the residents fled across the Chari River to Cameroon. In 2006 and 2008, there was a battle over the city between rebels and government forces.