Impact of floods on rural livelihoods of people residing in flood prone areas: the case of Luhonono community in the Zambezi region of Namibia
Mashebe, Mashebe Percy
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This study examined the impact of floods on the livelihoods of the community of the Luhonono area, formerly Schuckmannsburg, in the Kabbe constituency in the Zambezi region of Namibia. The problem identified is the persistent flooding in the Luhonono area, giving rise to the need to examine the impact of floods on the livelihoods of the local community. The study employed both qualitative and quantitative approaches, utilising both descriptive and exploratory designs. The target population for the study was all the heads of hou eholds, community leaders and political counci llors of government in Luhonono area. The study applied both purposive sampling and simple random sampling techn iques. Purposive sampling was used to select three, in formation-rich key info rmants; the area Headman, the Councillor and the Community Development Committee member (CDC). A simple random sampling technique was used to choose a sample of 169 participants from a total of 800 households in the area. Structured questionnaires and an interview guide were used as research instruments to collect the data from the sample. The data collected was computed using the Excel computer program and the data was analysed by both qualitative and quantitative techniques. Chi Square tests were carried out to determine the association of villages and severity of the flooding to the respondents. Hypotheses to test this association were examined using the Chi Square method. It was established that there is no association between the villages and the overall severity of the floods in the Luhonono area. This implies that all the villages were equally affected by the flood. On the other hand, the results of the study showed that floods impacted more severely on one or more of the crops, livestock, water quality, child education, livelihoods and dwellings. The results have shown that crops and child education were the most affected. The study further recommended that the Government of the Republic of Namibia should step up the relocation drives (considering the willingness of the affected people), linked to positive incentives which would be a longterm solution, unlike the temporary provision of utilities during times of flooding.
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