Wednesday, October 31, 2012

South Africa - the inequality didn't go away

South Africa’s first census in a decade shows wealth disparities between race groups that persist 18 years after the end of apartheid. While incomes for black households increased an average 169 percent over 10 years, their annual earnings are 60,613 rand ($6,987), or a sixth of that for whites.

Population growth and life expectancy have been curbed by one of the world’s worst AIDS epidemics. About one in nine people in South Africa are infected with HIV, the virus that causes the disease, according to the government. The census found 3.37 million children under the age of 17, or 19 percent of the total, had lost one or both parents, with AIDS cited as a major contributor.

“These figures tell us that at the bottom of the rung is the black majority who continue to be confronted by deep poverty, unemployment and inequality,”
President Jacob Zuma said.

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