has the highest population density in Africa. During the time of
Arab and European slave trading, Rwanda and Burundi were the only
countries in central Africa to defend themselves against the slave
traders. Not only was Rwanda's population not reduced by the slave
trade, but it actually increased as other people sought refuge there.
The country has coped with the high population density because the
soil and climate have supported intensive cultivation.
is officially compulsory for children aged seven to fifteen, but
at primary level only about two-thirds of children attend school.
Secondary schools have space for only 10 per cent of primary school
graduates and less than one per cent go on to university, either
in Rwanda or overseas. The National University of Rwanda in Butare
opened in 1963.
major health problems include malnutrition, malaria, tuberculosis
and HIV/AIDS. Nearly half of all households do not produce enough
food for their families. About 80 per cent of Rwandans have access
to healthcare but these health centres and dispensaries are poorly
equipped and people don't have the money to pay for treatment. Rwanda
has an adult HIV/AIDS infection rate of over 12.75 per cent. It
is one of nine countries in the world, all in Africa, with an adult
infection rate of 10 per cent or more.