Doctoral Degrees (DPPL)

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    Safeguarding patient safety in healthcare settings in Namibia: An appraisal of the regulatory framework governing healthcare professionals’ conduct and practice
    (University of Namibia, 2022) Weyulu, Cornelius Vataleni
    Patient safety refers to a framework of organised activities that creates cultures, processes, procedures, behaviours, technologies, and environments in healthcare, which consistently and sustainably lowers risks, reduces the occurrence of avoidable harm, makes error less likely, and reduces its impact when it does occur. The overall aim of the study was to evaluate the appropriateness of the Namibian regulatory framework for healthcare professions to contribute to the improvement of patient safety and, if not, how it can be enhanced. A mixed method approach was used in this study as quantitative, qualitative, exploratory, and descriptive research methods were employed. The necessary data were collected through literature review and analysis of relevant legislations, case law as well as government and regulatory authorities’ reports. The finding of this study is that Namibia has adopted a hybrid form of a traditional model of professional self-regulation, which is predominantly person-centred and premised on individual accountability with little or no regard for systemic and organisational factors such as bad policies and procedures, lack of resources and poor organisational culture that may compromise patient safety. In this respect, the Namibian regulatory framework for healthcare professions may be regarded as appropriate, but inadequate to improve patient safety. The study recommends a shift from the traditional way of regulating healthcare professions that focuses exclusively on individual healthcare practitioners to one that includes systemic and organisational determinants of patient safety, and simultaneously ensures that both individuals and systems can be held accountable when appropriate.
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    A critical legal analysis of the law, principles and practice of transboundary water lar in Southern Africa: The case of Okavango river basin
    (University of Namibia, 2021) Mapaure, Clever
    The exponential rise in global population and its growing resource needs has led to an inevitable geometric rise in demand for water. At the centre of this growing demand is how nations relate to each other in the management of trans-boundary water resources. In analysing state relations in so far as transboundary water management and allocation is concerned, the central concept of equity becomes very important to consider. This dissertation is based on research on the Okavango River Basin, but also considers international law and other relevant comparative jurisdictions and river basins in Southern Africa and elsewhere. In order to answer the research questions, the literature that is applicable to the other river basins is extensively analysed. The research questions for this study moved from the general to the particular and were centred on the definition of equity and equitable water allocation. Also, the study considered the questions as to whether the inclusion of equitable language in transboundary water management and allocation agreements really makes a practical difference in transboundary water law at the basin level and in this light, whether the signing of the water agreements on the use and management of Okavango waters has led to conflict or cooperation. The concluding question focused on how the regime theory can help in understanding of interstate water co-operation and whether based on this understanding, a typology or model for Okavango River Basin can be constructed. The dissertation records some findings which include that the inclusion of equitable language does not in itself connote lack of conflict or cooperation. Further, the signing of water agreements on the use and management of Okavango waters has not been the sole cause of the apparent cooperation. The cooperation that exists is mainly out of political will or based on expectation of some economic benefit. It is emphasised in the dissertation that differences of opinion between the watercourse states are based not only on their legal views, but also on their material political and economic interests. The dissertation highlights many instances which show conflict. This study was mainly desk-based and followed a mixed methodological approach. The analysis of data was based on some inductive strategy. The result of these methodologies and research paradigms was the development of a Five Pillar model out of the understanding from the regime theory. Based on this model, two Model Agreements applicable to the Okavango River basin were drafted and attached to the Dissertation as Annexes.
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    Linguistic rights in Africa: A critical analysis of the survivability of indigenous languages of Namibia
    (University of Namibia, 2021) Harris, Christian
    The call for the protection and promotion of languages, especially minority languages has gained prominence in recent years largely due to awareness campaigns by academics and human rights organisations. The United Nations through its agency the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) continues to promote linguistic and cultural diversity as well as multilingualism. To this effect, the UN recognizes 21 February as ‘International Mother Tongue Day. Alarmingly, about 90% of the world’s languages are expected to die out within the next 100 years or so if mechanisms to reverse this impending tragedy are not adopted by various states across the world. The study therefore focused on the language situation in Africa in general and Namibia in particular. It should be noted that the study was interdisciplinary in nature. It encompassed areas of sociology, linguistics, anthropology, history, political science and law. Because of its interdisciplinary approach, the study discussed issues of language and nation state, language loss, international law and language rights, the linguistic history of Africa as well as the economic and political effects related to the marginalization of African languages. Desktop research methodology and to a lesser extent face to face interviews were the main methods used to acquire data for the study. The study revealed two crucial findings: These are: (1) there is no specific international legal instrument that recognizes the right to language. (2) The study further found that Namibia recognizes the right to language under its Constitution, however, there is no specific law nor a language body that specifically protects and promotes local languages. The author thus recommended that the Namibian National Language Policy as crafted in 1981 be reviewed and updated. The author further recommends that African languages be used in all educational settings. This will encourage language scholars to develop new vocabulary and new scientific terminologies to represent new thoughts and philosophies articulated in African languages.