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What is life really like in SA? Given the pressing problems of unemployment, poverty and crime, it may be tempting to think life is miserable for the majority of South Africans. But analysts at the Institute of Race Relations (IRR) think it is an overly simplistic analysis and have delved deeply into the national condition to reach a series of contrary conclusions. A report the IRR has just released, Life in South Africa: Reasons for Hope, finds that murder rates have fallen, job numbers increased, more South Africans are going to university than ever before and living conditions have shown extraordinary levels of improvement. Consider for example that: • The number of new HIV/AIDS infections has halved since 1999; • The economy has grown 85% in real terms since 1994; • The number of people with jobs has doubled since 1994; • For every shack erected since 1994, 10 formal houses have been built; • Average growth in disposable income per head from 1994 to 2015 was 1.7% per year; • The...

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