The Institute of Race Relations (IRR) has released a new comfort/deprivation index, assessing 44 municipal and 8 metropolitan districts on standards of living.
The index was launched ahead of the 2016 municipal elections – 3 August 2016 – to give an overview of how municipalities across the country are performing in serving the needs of the people.
One of the key indicators of the index is income levels across the country – where higher income levels signify a more comfortable standard of living, while low income levels indicate more deprived communities.
The index looked at individual monthly income (including social grants) across several income brackets, namely:
- R1 – R1,600
- R1,601 – R3,200
- R3,201 – R6,400
- R6,401 – R12,800
- R12,801 – R25,600
- R25 601 – R51,200
- R51,201 – R102,400
- R102,401 – R204,800
In every municipality and major metro in South Africa, the largest portion of the population earns between R1 and R1,600, showing widespread poverty across the country.
The figures dip significantly in the metros, which often house the wealthiest individuals in the country.
The poorest municipality was found to be Alfred Nzo in the Eastern Cape where more than 90% of the population earn the lowest amount. On the other side of the spectrum, Johannesburg metro is perhaps unsurprisingly the wealthiest district.
The tables below show the top 15 richest and poorest municipalities in the country.
Due to the significantly low percentages for top earners, the wealthiest municipalities are based on the combined percentages of the people earning over R51,201 per month.
The richest municipalities in SA
|#||Municipality||Town/City||Province||% earning more than R51,201pm|
|3||Cape Town||Cape Town||WC||2.0%|
|9||Buffalo City||East London||EC||0.9%|
|9||Nelson Mandela Bay||Port Elizabeth||EC||0.9%|
The poorest municipalities in SA
|#||Municipality||Town/City||Province||% earning less than R1,600pm|
|1||Alfred Nzo||Mount Ayliff||EC||90.2%|
|4||O R Tambo||Mthatha||EC||88.7%|
|9||Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati||Vryburg||NW||85.3%|
|10||Joe Gqabi||Barkly East||EC||85.1%|
Looking at the overall Comfort/Deprivation Index, The IRR found that 19 of the 52 municipal districts have an overall deprivation ranking (balance of the comfort and deprivation indices), with Alfred Nzo and OR Tambo municipalities in the Eastern Cape coming out the worst.
On the flip side, 33 municipalities have a net comfort score, showing an overall positive picture for the country.
Notably, metropolitan districts such as City of Cape Town, Johannesburg and Tshwane came out as the most ‘comfortable’, by a large margin.
You can view the full breakdown here: The best and worst places to live in every province in South Africa