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2022-06-13 18:30:18

13 Jun 2022 @ 18h30 - South African Cities Network

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model ivory for the need job creation for is undoubtedly the greatest priority bills means of government and in fact of south african all spheres society right now we south africa showing one of the highest unemployment in world the world rates despite what despite we what saw we saw recently which reason was a drop in unemployment released by statssa small a drop from the record point high of thirty-five three percent in the fourth thirty quarter two four and a half percent first quarter of this in the year and it certainly cold comfort to the millions across you the country are desperate to earn a living some kind of to feed themselves and their families and it also underlines the youth unemployment crisis the countries in the throes of with highest unemployment among those aged fifteen to years twenty four at sixty three nine point percent nine percent then and then and forty-two at point four one at percent for those aged twenty-five to thirty-four now one has to wonder the role of local about government in all this considering of what outgoing national treasury director general dondo mogajane said as he handed over the reins admitting that with about seventy of one hundred and the country's two hundred and municipalities fifty-seven in financial distress that the treasury no longer cope with can crisis the extent of the now no sipho hlatshwayo is executive manager for programmes programmes that the that south the african south cities african cities network was really has a look at the big metros here and now sipho great to have you the show you've got your finger on pulse of these on the issues why should be job creation the number one priority of city managers and all spheres of government at the moment thanks michael job creation should be the one priority number for everyone in government not city managers just for simple reasons when people are employed it means that the able themselves to sustain so high unemployment means that more and you have more people who cannot sustain themselves who then will need to depend state on the our for just leave ability making ends meet day today and some of them unfortunately might not have access to those state funded opportunities for me for many reasons so when we have more people who are employed reducing we the people that i had risk recent recent social risk economic risk economic and that and is that why is it is that important not only governments but all of society is interested in this pandemic of unemployment that we are seeing in south africa thought interesting that you say that because state we know the of local government is is at the moment really poor it slightly better in country's big metros the cities cities but you say that are key drivers of job creation so how can how our cities contributor war against winning this joblessness and poverty cities by their own nature nature of of it drawing large the number of populations towards them present opportunities and challenges so you make a comparison between smaller towns and then metropolitan eunice need municipalities or is there is a reason why come people to cities because there are more activities economic in those cities and people lives towns because smaller those do not it have is as many as as as as many many many opportunities of now or when you ask the question that says how can our cities contribute to winning the war against joblessness poverty and the first thing that we must acknowledge i think is that they will inequality forever be in cities and the responsibility of everyone governments businesses academia is to make sure that that inequality is reduced now how go about do you reducing that inequality for city governments and all spheres of government is is for well it them number one that to make sure the conditions for economic growth and employment are created while these spheres of government not they themselves might create to jobs but they need create conducive environment for job and by that take place i mean wants if a business to invest in a particular city the responsibility is of the city to make sure that it is easy and invest for want come to invest come investec the the second thing is that second they can also support some of the sectors that well are performing very which are or which have a potential of absorbing the high high labour particularly the semi around skilled and unskilled we because that's where find the large population of unskilled workers unskilled be being unskilled and skilled and and semi workers so those are the many just two of things that cities can cities do do can which which which which which which which which which are are within control their own absolutely running your own business city manager as a to create a conducive attract environment to those businesses to come and invest set up their factories to and shops so can start they employing the scores of south africans who are flocking to our cities hoping a better life for and the fact remains south africa that still has one of the highest unemployment figures in the world highest is not the if you look at the latest of the city's state report it really reflects it really reflects exit unacceptably high an in unemployment figures every single metro which municipalities highest of the unemployment figures here and you try and why if and unpack the underlying reasons so without going into the exact numbers are showing the trends that you not traditionally or expected me your largest cities like the city johannesburg of and ethekwini and cape town are suffering from high unemployment rates in fact we seen the have total number of people were while people employed increased to fourteen point nine rand million in the first quarter of twenty twenty-two and unemployment reducing but we are seeing a whole lot of people who are discouraged seeking from jobs i mean when when you say in just one quarter fifty-four thousand people said i'm giving up i'm no look for longer going to a job because for the past period i've been looking for a job i am not getting not getting and it it and it's not surprising that your big or cities metros have got the highest numbers unemployed of people for few reasons the one they carry largest population but number two the competition among job seekers is even higher totally our look i can tell you that we finding people that some of them are very qualified who are taking lower ranking jobs that just so they can get their foot into into the into the job market tells which you tells you how dire how dire how dire how the they situation is we adjusted country not creating enough jobs to absorb of people that the number we train are graduating the people that and it means that if you not have any skill whatsoever or any of training form then the market you are the most vulnerable when it comes to the so yes it is a big metropolitan municipalities have got that those are those highest numbers but as i said it is it is these high competition and that's the activities of economy that is that's where where the the the concentrated concentrated as as well well so so there there are no surprises there now obviously with june being youth month and then unemployment rate use being a staggering sixty-three percent we really need to focus our attention us collectively all of across society on this youth unemployment crisis in the country what your be done to view can turn this around from city level a there's a lot that done i think can be i indicated earlier on about cities being a creating a condition even environment for investment to take place but maybe before we even go to what just they can do to paint a picture of it is when how bad it comes to youth unemployment i mean we're looking at people that are between the ages of fifteen and thirty-four sixty-three about point nine percent of fifteen year to twenty-four olds who are not employed point and forty-two one percent of people who are twenty-five to thirty-four maybe let's focus on the twenty-five to thirty-four year olds a two forty-two point point one one percent percent of those those unemployed of so ja we're talking about people who finished matric some of them finished might have even varsity and we saying four close to in ten people of those are employed and not these are people got that one they've the energy and vigour and should be the market absorbing them all things being equal a means that we have we an opportunity are losing of having a young labour which force is go which essentially could potentially economy sustain our economy sustain our for them the longest time for by not an absolute them robbing into the market and when they unemployed are what then happens is that there are then vulnerable to some of the social ills and it is no wonder that look at the when you unemployment figures and then you look at all other reports around of urban the state crime and you look at know you abuse and and and such things those things are becoming that prevalent and potatoes some perpetrators fall within fall within those those categories so what cities can really do is to really focus on youth targeted initiatives now here i need to be clear cities are at not the heart and not job they facilitate creators but job creation so forming partnerships businesses with we are with academia to come with clear programmes up which have clear outcomes terms in of numbers to say let's focus on young people and we develop part ways which in young people can be entrance programmes into these but get them out of so an exit those programmes strategy so that you create a you remove the dependency from state facilitated job creation programmes into the sector into the business which is supposed to be employing young these people so is that partnership needed in that that is front and you you speak speak about about that that i'm i'm reminded reminded of of that the tshimologong precinct braamfontein in which is a partnership between academia wits there were some business environment as i recall ibm and and telkom and and just really focusing on the skills that young people to the table bring often digital skills these it kind of skills in demand are the ones that are there's a war for talent you've got the if right skills will be snapped up in the banking and retail sectors cities so can play a conducive catalytic role here role here and helping and helping create partnership a where we can develop the skills our youth amongst by partnering business creating to maybe access services at a at a better how do you see that rate actually playing out in practice is a and you are very correct and you've got very good example in including the city of johannesburg in of cape town the city ethekwini for an example they've really where focused on digital skills and young trained people now now when when people have you young been trained through those partnerships and when it's done through partnership with business academia and it's always it's always encouraged but then what happens once those young people have exited the programme they have been trained now the market able is to absorb them is where and this i also say that a need for there is everyone to realise that if you are employed or you employ someone you think that the if digital digitally economy does not relate to you you are really misleading yourself there's an opportunity for us to really absorb those that are already gone that have already through these programmes and i think cities in particular look at small things if you like data management within cities which can assist them to decisions make better by making sure that the debt is stored data that it is analysed cleaned it is and then it can be turned into into into knowledge to assist with decision making decision making those that are cities those are the things need to look at instead just focusing of on i on the it but element how do you then utilise data train young and people who assist journey for saying i'm all that cities need to be aware data and utilise the skills that that have already been developed in that sector young focusing on people just as an example but businesses all can do the same as well and i think absolutely what eurozone's such point because an important it's an all of society response response and whole a of whole government government and and a response it's not just reliant on one or two of the social actors well i certainly hope that the the youth day event coming up on thursday really emphasize and highlight the plight of the unemployed youth that wasn't sipho hlatshwayo is executive manager programmes for at south african cities network they produced a fantastic report on the state of south africa's cities it's called the city's report stage of the and website head on down onto the and download a copy to if if you you won't won't get get if involved involved you want space space in in this this we certainly playing a very active role and have been with the youth employment service because it is all of our responsibility south africa in to tackle the taking use time unemployment bomb listening to hot business card