South Africa’s unemployment

Unemployed South Africans waiting in a queue for jobs / File photo

Unemployment Statistics: KZN now second worst province – Stats SA

A staggering 83 000 people joined the unemployment queue in Kwa-Zulu-Natal over the past year according to the latest Stats SA survey.

South Africa’s unemployment

Unemployed South Africans waiting in a queue for jobs / File photo

KwaZulu-Natal is one of the worst performing provinces in terms of unemployment and job losses, having shed more than 33 000 jobs quarter on quarter during the first quarter of 2021.

This was according to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey, which was released by Statistics South Africa on Tuesday. According to the survey KZN ranked as the second worst performing province for unemployment in the country.

Democratic Alliance spokesperson on Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs, Heinz de Boer, said it was even more alarming though was the 3.6% year-on-year increase in unemployment compared to the first quarter of 2020. 

“This equates to a staggering 83 000 people who are joining the unemployment queue,” he said.

“The province’s own Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (EDTEA) MEC, Ravi Pillay, recently candidly admitted that the responsibility for KZN’s unemployment crisis rests on the shoulders of the ANC,” de Boer said.

The response came after a scathing attack on the DA during recent budget debates. “The DA has consistently pointed out the failure of BEEE programmes and a largely wasteful R2 billion annual Economic Development provincial budget,” de Boer said.

He said the latest statistics backed the DA’s allegation that provincial departmental budgets were aimed at the politically connected. 

“This while the ordinary unemployed men, women and youth continue to suffer. Instead of playing politics with its provincial budget, the ANC should – decades ago – have started dissecting and dismantling Apartheid era spatial planning and invested heavily in the rural economy,” de Boer said.

“Coupled with a simple infrastructure plan to lure investors to rural regions, the ANC in KZN had an opportunity to create jobs where the majority of our people live. Instead, it has entrenched a system of poverty and lack of municipal services – leaving many with no hope for a job or prosperity,” he said.

De Boer said the province needed a capable state to create an environment where the economy can grow and allow for job creation.