Reality Check:  South Africans’ Views of the New South Africa

Reality Check: South Africans’ Views of the New South Africa
A Report on a National Survey of the South Africa People, 1999

Reality Check is a joint project of the Henry J.Kaiser Family Foundation and Independent Newspapers. It is based on a national representative survey conducted face to face with 3,000 South Africans in November and December of 1998. Its purpose was to give South Africans a way to talk about their feelings on the new South Africa beyond the vote they would cast at the ballot box in the June 1999 election. The survey explores South Africans’ perceptions of democracy, their assessment of the transition years, and their atttiudes toward the future. The survey also sought to shed light on how South Africans think and feel about race, reconciliation, and natural unity; and about issues like the economy, crime, education and health. The survey was reported in Independent Newspapers from April 19 to April 23, 1999 with a special supplement of the findings reported on April 28, 1999. In addtion to the national survey the study included interviews with members of Parliament. This report summarizes the key findings from the national survey of South Africans and their political leaders in Parliament.

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