It’s been only 20 years since South Africa got rid of the apartheid policies – a brutal form of government in which white population held all the power while other racial groups were segregated and oppressed. Now the playing field has been leveled out a bit, which resulted in white ghettos appearing all over the region.
Photographer Jacques Nelles went to Munsieville township, west of Johannesburg, to document the life in a white ghetto. “The people I met mostly live off of disability funds from the government and they receive lots of sponsorship in terms of foods and other groceries from charities,” he told Mail Online. “There is a sense of them thinking they are entitled to it [charity], that the system after apartheid has belittled them and therefore they can justify sitting back and receiving things from charity.”
The numbers of white people below poverty line still hardly compares to the ones of the other racial groups. Around 42,000 of the 4.5 million white South Africans are thought to live in poverty, which accounts to only 0.9%. Now compare this to 63.2% of the country’s 43 million black South Africans and around 37% of mixed race people.
The toughest part in all this according to Nelles is the situation of the kids in those ghettos: “I was mostly affected by the amount of children I saw, living in squalor. It saddens me to think they might never leave this level of poverty and will remain living in this situation for the rest of their lives.“