woman in her tailoring business
A woman presents her small tailoring business supported through the community capacity enhancement (CCE) initiative. Photo - UNDP

The Reduction of Human Poverty programme is based on the priorities of the UNPAF (2014-2018) and linked to the UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017.   Efforts are aimed at improving capacities at national, regional and local level for integrating the Millennium Development Goals, National Development Plans and supporting the country towards the achievement of Vision 2030. It responds to the objectives set in Namibia‚Äôs major policies and strategic development frameworks. Furthermore, it aims to assist Namibia to meet its international and regional obligations.  Projects executed under the Reduction of Human Poverty will contribute to ongoing initiatives aimed at attaining national poverty reduction goals and contributing to the realization of the Millennium Development Goals.

The major function of the SPU is the production and dissemination of strategic analytical studies; promotion of policy dialogue and advocacy; support for development of policies and programmes that promote economic growth and poverty reduction; and monitoring, evaluation and communication of progress towards the realization of stated national, programme and project objectives and results. In so doing, SPU strives to ensure that all activities undertaken are aimed at poverty reduction, human development and the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals.  

The specific functions of SPU however, include, but not limited to, the following:

  • Provision of sound technical and advisory support to the development of national development plans and policy documents including Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS), MDGs-based/consistent/responsive national and sectoral development plans and strategies.
  • Provision of monitoring, evaluation and communication functions to support the CO and national institutions, including the Government, in programmes/projects delivery.
  • Provision of technical and advisory support to the publication of flagship/cutting edge policy documents such as the National Human Development Report (NHDR), the Millennium Development Goals Report (MDGR) and other policy documents.
  • Provision of technical and advisory support in the conduct of policy oriented research on issues of economic growth, poverty reduction, gender, ICT and other MDG-related issues.
  • Provision of technical and advisory support to the formulation and implementation of pro-poor and gender-sensitive national, sub-national and sectoral policies, plans, programmes and budgets.
  • Support for resource mobilization, partnership development and gender mainstreaming to ensure effective CO programme delivery
  • Support national efforts aimed building the capacity of key national institutions such as the National Planning Commission and other line ministries, agencies and departments.
  • Support the strengthening of programme linkages and networking with other UN Agencies, International Financial Institutions (IFIs), and other development partners.
  • Performance of any other functions as may be directed by the Resident Representative/Coordinator, RBA and ASRO.

In 2012/2013 the Strategic and Policy Unit of UNDP in collaboration with the Ministry of Works and Transport through the Roads Authority undertook a study on the impact of public works programme on employment creation in the North and North- Eastern regions of Oshikoto, Oshana/ Omusati and Caprivi.

The study has put in the limelight the gender dimensions of public works which encompass the two main concerns, mainly, women access to direct wage employment benefits offered by public works; and women benefits from the assets created by public works. The above dimensions will be important in influencing policies pertaining to prioritization of public works as a major component of poverty reduction in the country due to the fact that poverty and unemployment in Namibia has a feminization face.