Desperate Lives

The equation is simple. The mathematics teacher makes just under $100 a month teaching at a Kinshasa high school and helping with the accounts at a government ministry. But he spends eight times that amount, the equivalent of $800 a month according to the official exchange rate, on rent for a modest three-bedroom house and food for his wife and four children. "It's only by the grace of God that I am here," says the teacher, who declines to reveal his name because he fears official reprisal. "The day will come when I will just give up and move back to...

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