Swaziland

  • 33% of females13-24 yearsreported sexual violence before 18 years of age

  • 15 percent of the total population are orphans

  • 65 percent of the population live inextreme poverty

  • Life expectancy is estimtated at 37-47 years

  • 15% of thepopulationwithout a safe placeto go to the toilet

  • Under 5 mortality 73 per 1000

  • Girls can marry at the age of 13 years

  • Over 25% of people between 15 and 49were living withHIV/AIDS in 2007

  • Women are legal minorsto thier husbands'Martial Power

 

Swaziland is one of the world’s poorest countries but it receives very little international monetary support. Ten percent of the 1.36 million population of Swaziland controls almost half the national wealth whilst it is estimated that around 70 percent of the people live below the poverty line of US $1 per day.

Social and economic problems are rooted in the world’s most severe HIV/AIDS pandemic and years of persistently low economic growth have led to stubbornly high poverty. Many Swazis live in chronic poverty and food shortages are widespread. AIDS is taking a heavy toll with more than a quarter of the adult population believed to be infected with HIV.

It is estimated that a quarter of the adult population is infected with HIV, this being exacerbated by chronic poverty and widespread food shortages. Economically, growth has been particularly stunted, either through climatic conditions such as drought and floods, if not overgrazing, soil depletion and the like.

With its unique political and economic situation, Swaziland finds itself on the brink of collapse. Politically, King Mswati III rules by decree over his people; most of whom live in the countryside and follow traditional ways of life. The highly patriarchal nature of the country also hinders progress by preventing the active societal participation of women, also placing children at high risk.