The Republic of Chad (Republique du Tchad) is a landlocked country in the heart of Africa (Central Africa) just at the south of Libya. The Republic of Chad was named after Lake Chad which is the most significant water body in the Sahel. The Republic of Chad shares borders with the Republic of Sudan to the east, the Republic of Niger to the west, the Republics of Cameroon and Nigeria to the southwest and the Republic of Libya to the north.
The Republic of Chad has a total land area of about 1,284,000 squared kilometers and a population of about 11 million people with the population growth rate around 2.6%. Only about 28% of the total Chadian population live in urban areas. Majority of the population live in rural areas.
N'djamena the capital of Chad contains about 1 million people.
Due to its geographic location, the Republic of Chad is one of the most culturally diverse countries in Africa today with several ethnic and racial groups living together. Some of the major ethnic groups in Chad today include the Sara (about 27.7% of the total population), Arabs (about 12.3% of the total population) , Mayo-Kebbi (about 11.5%), Kanem-Bornou (about 9%), Ouaddai (about 8.7% of the total population), Hadjarai (about 6.7% of the total population), Tandjile (about 6.5% of the total population), Gorane (about 6.3%), Fitri-Batha( about 4.7%), other (about 6.4% of the total population), unknown (about 0.3% of the total population). Like most of the surrounding countries, the Republic of Chad is a Muslim-dominant country with about 53.1% being Muslims. Catholics and Protestants form about 35% of the total population. Although French and Arabic are the two official languages spoken, there are over 120 different languages and dialects in Chad today. The Sara language for example is very popular in the south.
The Republic of Chad just like its neighboring countries is blessed with abundance of natural resources including gold, petroleum, uranium, limestone, kaolin, fish(from lake Chad), sand and gravel, salt, etc.
However, despite the abundance of natural resources in Chad today, the Republic of Chad remains one of the poorest countries in Africa. Republic of Chad has one of the worst literacy rates in all of Africa. The literacy rate in Chad today is around 25.7% for the total population with the female literacy rate around 12.8%. In other words, just about 25.7% of the total population of Chad above age 15 can read and write. Only about 12.1% of females above age 15 can read and write which is very bad compared to other African countries.
Although the southern parts of Chad are tropical, the northern parts are mostly deserts with inadequate supply of portable water. The improper waste disposal and poor practices including poor farming practices especially in the rural areas contribute greatly to land and water pollution and also desertification.
Despite the numerous HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns, more than 210,000 people were living with HiV/AIDS in 2009 with about 11,000 deaths recorded within the same year. Although the northern parts are somehow spared, the southern parts of Chad remains one of the malaria killing zones in Africa today. Diarrhea, schistosomiasis, animal contact diseases such as rabies, and several other diseases continue to threaten people in this part of the world.
Due to its geographic location, violence in neighboring countries easily spread to Chad making Chad one of the few unstable countries in Africa today. Political and ethnic violence are very common with women and children often being the target group. In his numerous attempts to overthrow the current Chadian president, Chad's violent neighbor Omar Al-Bashir the president of North Sudan often sponsors several rebel groups to destabilize the region.
Like most other poor countries in Africa, poor leadership and corruption continue to tear the beautiful Republic of Chad into pieces.