The Human Truth Foundation

Gambia (Republic of The Gambia)

By Vexen Crabtree 2013

#gambia

Gambia
Republic of The Gambia
StatusIndependent State
Social and Moral Index159th best
CapitalBanjul
Land Area 10 120km21
LocationAfrica
Population2.3m2
Life Expectancy60.46yrs (2017)3
GNI$1 541 (2017)4
ISO3166-1 CodesGM, GMB, 2705
Internet Domain.gm6
CurrencyDalasi (GMD)7
Telephone+2208

1. Overview

#senegal #UK

The Gambia gained its independence from the UK in 1965. Geographically surrounded by Senegal, it formed a short-lived federation of Senegambia between 1982 and 1989. In 1991 the two nations signed a friendship and cooperation treaty, but tensions have flared up intermittently since then. Yahya JAMMEH led a military coup in 1994 that overthrew the president and banned political activity. A new constitution and presidential elections in 1996, followed by parliamentary balloting in 1997, completed a nominal return to civilian rule. JAMMEH has been elected president in all subsequent elections including most recently in late 2011.

CIA's The World Factbook (2013)9

Book CoverThe Gambia, the smallest country in mainland Africa, contains a lot within its compact frame, attracting sun-seekers and birdwatchers and displaying a wealth of natural riches. This tiny sliver of land is wedged into surrounding Senegal, and is seen as a splinter in its side, or the tongue that makes it speak, depending on who you talk to. For many, The Gambia is a country with beaches that invite visitors to laze and linger on package tours. Its beaches and the adjacent resorts long ago became famous among sun-starved Europeans. But there´s more here than just sun and surf.

Small fishing villages, nature reserves and historic slaving stations are all within easy reach of the clamorous Atlantic resorts. Star-studded ecolodges and small wildlife parks dot the inland like a green belt around the coast, and among birdwatchers The Gambia is revered as one of Africa´s best and most accessible birding destinations - it lies on the main migratory path between Europe and Africa. On a leisurely river cruise, you´ll easily spot more than 100 species while your pirogue (traditional canoe) charts an unhurried course through mangrove-lined wetlands and lush gallery forests.

"The World" by Lonely Planet (2014)10

2. Gambia National and Social Development

#economics #human_development

UN HDI (2016)11
Pos.Lower is better
Rank11
1Norway1
2Australia2
3Switzerland2
...
170Malawi170
171Ivory Coast171
172Djibouti172
173Gambia173
174Ethiopia174
175Mali175
176Congo, DR176
177Liberia177
World Avg94.3
q=188.
Gross National Income Per-Capita (2011)12
Pos.Higher is better
PPP $12
1Qatar$129 916
2Singapore$78 162
3Kuwait$76 075
...
173Rwanda$1 617
174Zimbabwe$1 588
175Solomon Islands$1 561
176Gambia$1 541
177Burkina Faso$1 537
178Sierra Leone$1 529
179Ethiopia$1 523
180Eritrea$1 490
World Avg$17 240
q=193.
Social & Moral
Development Index
13,14
Pos.Lower is better
Avg Rank13,14
1Taiwan30.2
2Denmark30.5
3Norway30.9
...
156Ethiopia111.2
157Cameroon111.3
158Pakistan111.4
159Gambia111.4
160Sierra Leone111.6
161Nigeria111.6
162Haiti112.9
163Myanmar (Burma)113.2
World Avg86.4
q=195.

The United Nations produces an annual Human Development Report which includes the Human Development Index. The factors taken into account include life expectancy, education and schooling and Gross National Income (GNI) amongst many others..

The Social and Moral Development Index concentrates on moral issues and human rights, violence, public health, equality, tolerance, freedom and effectiveness in climate change mitigation and environmentalism, and on some technological issues. A country scores higher for achieving well in those areas, and for sustaining that achievement in the long term. Those countries towards the top of this index can truly said to be setting good examples and leading humankind onwards into a bright, humane, and free future. See: Which are the Best Countries in the World? The Social and Moral Development Index.

3. Gambia's Demographics

#birth_control #demographics #health #immigration #life_expectancy #longevity #migration #overpopulation #population

Population:

The Gambia's population is predicted to rise to 2.818 million by 2030. This country has a fertility rate of 4.73. The fertility rate is, in simple terms, the average amount of children that each woman has. The higher the figure, the quicker the population is growing, although, to calculate the rate you also need to take into account morbidity, i.e., the rate at which people die. If people live healthy and long lives and morbidity is low, then, 2.0 approximates to the replacement rate, which would keep the population stable. If all countries had such a fertility rate, population growth would end. The actual replacement rate in most developed countries is around 2.1.

Population (2018)2
Pos.
Population2
1China1.4b
2India1.4b
3USA327.1m
...
139Lithuania2.8m
140Qatar2.8m
141Namibia2.4m
142Gambia2.3m
143Botswana2.3m
144Gabon2.1m
145Lesotho2.1m
146Macedonia2.1m
World Avg39.0m
q=195.
Life Expectancy (2015)12
Pos.Higher is better
Years12
1Hong Kong84.16
2Japan83.68
3Italy83.34
...
163Liberia61.19
164Zambia60.82
165Afghanistan60.70
166Gambia60.46
167Togo60.18
168Benin59.76
169Guinea59.22
170Uganda59.21
World Avg71.27
q=190.
Fertility Rate (2013)15
Pos.2.0 is best15
1N. Korea2.00
2Brunei1.99
3St Vincent & Grenadines2.01
...
153Iraq4.57
154Kenya4.64
155Senegal4.65
156Gambia4.73
157Mozambique4.75
158Comoros4.78
159Sierra Leone4.78
160Guinea-Bissau4.92
World Avg2.81
q=180.
Old-Age Dependency Ratio (2016)16
Pos.Lower is better
Per 10016
1Uganda04.3
2Mali04.5
3Chad04.7
4Burkina Faso04.7
5Sierra Leone04.8
6Zambia04.8
7Eritrea04.9
8Gambia04.9
9Angola05.0
10Afghanistan05.0
11Zimbabwe05.0
12Nigeria05.1
World Avg18.3
q=185.

Migration:

Immigrants (2017)17
Pos.
%17
1UAE88.4%
2Kuwait75.5%
3Qatar65.2%
...
57Greece10.9%
58Malta10.6%
59Italy10.0%
60Gambia9.8%
61Dominica9.2%
62Serbia9.1%
63Ivory Coast9.0%
64Malaysia8.5%
World Avg9.4%
q=195.
Emigrants (2010)18
Pos.
%18
1Dominica104.8%
2Palestine68.4%
3Samoa67.3%
...
126Panama4.0%
127Norway3.8%
128Bahrain3.7%
129Gambia3.7%
130Chile3.7%
131Peru3.7%
132Czechia3.6%
133Mauritania3.5%
World Avg11.5%
q=192.

4. Human Rights, Equality & Tolerance

#equality #freedom #gambia #human_rights #politics #tolerance

The Gambia is amongst the worst places in the world at ensuring human rights and freedom, and it has severe cultural issues when it comes to tolerance and equality. The Gambia does better than average in commentary in Human Rights Watch reports19 (one of the best in Africa). However The Gambia performs less well in most areas. It does worse than average in its nominal commitment to Human Rights20, supporting personal, civil & economic freedoms21, speed of uptake of HR treaties22, supporting press freedom23 and in LGBT equality24. And finally, it falls into the worst 20 in terms of opposing gender inequality25. Human rights in Gambia have greatly improved from 2017, since President Yahya Jammeh has been replaced with Adama Barrow and an era of authoritarian abuse is ending.26. Widespread reforms in multiple sectors have been instigated to support human rights, strengthen the judiciary and ensure media freedom26. There is still a lot of work to do.

For tables, charts and commentary, see:

5. Gambia's Health

#alcohol #birth_control #demographics #Gambia #health #life_expectancy #longevity #obesity #overpopulation #parenting #population #smoking #vaccines

Health (2020)27,28
Pos.Lower is better
Avg Rank27,28
1Hong Kong18.0
2Singapore41.5
3Maldives43.3
...
125Egypt100.6
126Guatemala100.6
127Comoros101.3
128Gambia101.3
129Uruguay102.1
130Guinea102.3
131Ghana102.6
132Montenegro102.9
133Malawi103.3
World Avg92.3
q=187.

The countries with the best overall approach to public health, in terms of both public policy and individual lifestyle choices, are Hong Kong, Singapore and The Maldives27. These countries are worth emulating. And, although often through no fault of the average citizen, the worst countries are S. Sudan, Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea27.

The data sets used to calculate points for each country are its average life expectancy, its alcohol consumption rate, its fertility rate, its smoking rate, its suicide rate, its food aid and health contributions and WHO compliance, the prevalence of overweight adults, its adolescent birth rate and its immunizations take-up. The regions with the best average results per country are Scandinavia, Asia and Europe27, whereas the worst are Africa, Micronesia and Polynesia27.

Health:

The Gambia has some poor policies and cultural issues which cause some public health problems. The Gambia does better than average when it comes to its smoking rate29, its immunizations take-up30 and in its alcohol consumption rate31. The Gambia does not succeed in everything, however. It does worse than average in its fertility rate15 and in its average life expectancy12. And finally, it falls into the worst-performing 20 when it comes to its adolescent birth rate25. The prevalence of overweight adults has increased by 14% over the last 40 years.
Life Expectancy (2015)12
Pos.Higher is better
Years12
1Hong Kong84.16
2Japan83.68
3Italy83.34
...
163Liberia61.19
164Zambia60.82
165Afghanistan60.70
166Gambia60.46
167Togo60.18
168Benin59.76
169Guinea59.22
170Uganda59.21
World Avg71.27
q=190.
Alcohol Consumption (2016)31
Pos.Lower is better
Per Capita31
1Bangladesh0.0
2Kuwait0.0
3Libya0.0
...
62Mauritius3.6
63Malawi3.7
64El Salvador3.8
65Gambia3.8
66Israel3.8
67UAE3.8
68N. Korea3.9
69Honduras4.0
World Avg6.2
q=189.
Fertility Rate (2013)15
Pos.2.0 is best15
1N. Korea2.00
2Brunei1.99
3St Vincent & Grenadines2.01
...
153Iraq4.57
154Kenya4.64
155Senegal4.65
156Gambia4.73
157Mozambique4.75
158Comoros4.78
159Sierra Leone4.78
160Guinea-Bissau4.92
World Avg2.81
q=180.
Smoking Rates (2014)29
Pos.Higher is worse29
182Montenegro4 125
181Belarus3 831
180Lebanon3 023
...
39Guinea-Bissau 175
38Nigeria 173
37Paraguay 166
36Gambia 166
35Zambia 165
34Chad 156
33Bhutan 155
32Mauritania 135
World Avg 819
q=182.
Overweight Adults (2016)32
Pos.Lower is better
%32
1Vietnam18.3
2India19.7
3Bangladesh20.0
...
48Liberia30.9
49Ivory Coast31.6
50Singapore31.8
51Gambia31.9
52Ghana32.0
53China32.3
54Mauritius32.3
55N. Korea32.4
World Avg49.0
q=191.

Children's Health:

Adolescent Birth Rate (2015)25
Pos.Lower is better
Per 100025
1N. Korea0.5
2S. Korea1.6
3Switzerland2.9
...
169Zimbabwe109.7
170Nigeria110.6
171Uganda111.9
172Gambia113.0
173Madagascar116.2
174Congo, (Brazzaville)117.7
175Sierra Leone118.2
176Tanzania118.6
World Avg47.9
q=185.
Infant Immunizations 2011-2015 (2015)30
Pos.Higher is better
Avg %30
1Hungary99.0
2China99.0
3Uzbekistan98.9
...
60Turkey95.5
61Malta95.5
62Botswana95.4
63Gambia95.4
64Cyprus95.3
65Switzerland95.3
66Israel95.2
67Grenada95.2
World Avg88.3
q=194.

6. Gambia's Modernity and Learning

#education #intelligence #modernity #research #science #technology #the_internet

Modernity and Learning (2020)33
Pos.Lower is better
Avg Rank33
1Finland8.0
2Belgium9.1
3Denmark10.0
...
162Mauritania108.7
163Guinea-Bissau109.3
164Cambodia110.0
165Gambia110.3
166Afghanistan112.5
167Mozambique113.8
168Congo, (Brazzaville)115.8
169Congo, DR116.0
170Lesotho116.7
World Avg69.0
q=180.

Modernity and Education:

Research and Development (2016)
Pos.Higher is better
% RDP PPP
1S. Korea4.2934
2Israel4.1134
3Japan3.5834
...
101Albania0.1535
102Namibia0.1436
103Georgia0.1337
104Gambia0.1338
105Tajikistan0.1239
106Burundi0.1238
107Madagascar0.1138
108Philippines0.1140
World Avg0.84
q=126.
Secondary Education (2018)41
Pos.Higher is better41
1Luxembourg100.0%
2Estonia100.0%
3Austria100.0%
...
130Guatemala37.8%
131Pakistan37.2%
132Cameroon37.2%
133Gambia36.8%
134Nepal35.9%
135Kenya35.2%
136Honduras33.5%
137Haiti33.2%
World Avg63.0%
q=169.
Length of Schooling (2018)42
Pos.Higher is better
Years42
1Australia22.1
2Belgium19.7
3Finland19.3
...
172Ivory Coast9.6
173Liberia9.6
174Haiti9.5
175Gambia9.5
176Equatorial Guinea9.2
177Guinea9.0
178Senegal9.0
179Burkina Faso8.9
World Avg13.2
q=193.
IQ (2006)43
Pos.Higher is better43
1Hong Kong108
2Singapore108
3S. Korea106
...
127Guinea67
128Liberia67
129Haiti67
130Gambia66
131Zimbabwe66
132Senegal66
133Sierra Leone64
134Mozambique64
World Avg85.6
q=138.

Technology and Information:

Internet Users (2016)44
Pos.Higher is better44
1Iceland100%
2Faroe Islands99%
3Norway98%
...
160Nepal17%
161Mauritania17%
162S. Sudan17%
163Gambia17%
164Laos16%
165Namibia16%
166Turkmenistan15%
167Bangladesh13%
World Avg48.1%
q=201.

7. National Culture

#corruption #politics

Corruption (2012-2016)45
Pos.Higher is better
Avg Score45
1Denmark90.8
2New Zealand90.6
3Finland89.4
...
127Mauritania29.8
128Guyana29.6
129Pakistan29.2
130Gambia29.0
131Honduras28.8
132Nepal28.6
133Azerbaijan28.6
134Madagascar28.4
World Avg43.05
q=176.

8. Peace Versus Instability

#human_development #peace #politics

Global Peace Index (2012)46
Pos.Lower is better46
1Iceland1.11
2New Zealand1.24
3Denmark1.24
...
71Ukraine1.95
72Tunisia1.96
73Cyprus1.96
74Gambia1.96
75Gabon1.97
76Paraguay1.97
77Greece1.98
78Senegal1.99
World Avg2.02
q=157.

9. The Natural Environment

#biodiversity #climate_change #over-exploitation #the_environment

Forest Area Change 1990-2015 (2015)47
Pos.Higher is better
%47
1Iceland205.6
2Bahrain144.4
3Uruguay131.3
...
39Lithuania12.1
40Belarus10.9
41India10.5
42Gambia10.4
43Macedonia10.3
44Serbia09.9
45Netherlands09.3
46Switzerland09.0
World Avg02.8
q=184.
Environmental Performance (2018)48
Pos.Higher is better48
1Switzerland87.4
2France84.0
3Denmark81.6
...
153Laos42.9
154Burkina Faso42.8
155Sierra Leone42.5
156Gambia42.4
157Congo, (Brazzaville)42.4
158Bosnia & Herzegovina41.8
159Togo41.8
160Liberia41.6
World Avg56.4
q=180.
Convention on Biological Diversity
Pos.Earlier is better
Signed
1China1993 Dec 29
2Guinea1993 Dec 29
3Cook Islands1993 Dec 29
...
60Egypt1994 Aug 31
61UK1994 Sep 01
62Chad1994 Sep 05
63Gambia1994 Sep 08
64Micronesia1994 Sep 18
65Malaysia1994 Sep 22
66Benin1994 Sep 28
67France1994 Sep 29
World Avg1899 Dec 30
q=197.

10. Economic Inequality and Poverty

#capitalism #economics #health #inequality #life_expectancy #poverty #social_development

Inequality in Life Expectancy (2019)49
Pos.Higher is worse49
184Chad40.90
183Central African Rep.40.10
182Sierra Leone39.00
...
161Liberia29.80
160Comoros28.90
159Burundi28.50
158Gambia28.50
157Afghanistan28.30
156Sudan27.40
155Uganda27.20
154Zambia26.50
World Avg14.59
q=184.
Income Inequality (Gini Coefficient) (2017)50
Pos.Lower is better
%50
1Ukraine25.0
2Belarus25.4
3Slovenia25.4
...
65Australia35.8
66Mauritius35.8
67Romania35.9
68Gambia35.9
69Greece36.0
70Spain36.2
71Laos36.4
72Thailand36.5
World Avg38.1
q=152.
Multidimensional Poverty (2018)51
Pos.Lower is better
Severity51
1Armenia.001
2Ukraine.001
3Serbia.001
...
80Tanzania.273
81Sudan.279
82Angola.282
83Gambia.286
84Senegal.288
85Nigeria.291
86Sierra Leone.297
87Liberia.320
World Avg.154
q=101.

11. Religion and Beliefs

#belief #buddhism #christianity #god #hinduism #islam #judaism #religion

Disbelief In God (2007)52
Pos.Higher is better
%52
1Vietnam81
2Japan65
3Sweden64
...
110Guinea0
111Ghana0
112Jordan0
113Gambia0
114Kenya0
115Ethiopia0
116Afghanistan0
117Egypt0
World Avg9.9
q=137.

Data from the Pew Forum, a professional polling outfit, states that in 2010 the religious makeup of this country was as follows in the table below53:

Christian4.5%
Muslim95.1%
Hindu0.1%
Buddhist0.1%
Folk Religion0.1%
Jew0.1%
Unaffiliated0.1%

The CIA World Factbook has slightly different data, and states simply: Muslim 90%, Christian 8%, indigenous beliefs 2%54.

The International Humanist and Ethical Union produced a report in 2012 entitled "Freedom of Thought" (2012)55, in which they document bias and prejudice at the national level that is based on religion, belief and/or lack of belief. Their entry for Gambia states:

Article 25 of the Constitution protects the rights of citizens to follow any religion or belief that they choose. The government has not established a state religion, although the constitution establishes Qadi (Muslim judge trained in the Islamic legal tradition) courts in such places as the chief justice determines. Their jurisdiction applies only to marriage, divorce, and inheritance questions for Muslims where they apply traditional Islamic law. The Supreme Islamic Council (SIC) is an independent body that advises the government on religious issues. Although the government does not have representation on the council, it provided the council with substantial funding56. The minister of religious affairs maintains a formal relationship with the council. Government meetings and events typically commenced with two prayers, one Islamic and one Christian.

The government funds religious instruction in schools. Public and private schools throughout the country provide Biblical and Qur'anic studies with government support.

"Freedom of Thought" by IHEU (2012)57

Links: