Record numbers come to city in search of better life
THE population of the Western Cape is up significantly, as thousands of people from other provinces flock to it in search of educational and job opportunities.
That is according to Stats SA data handed to Acting Premier Bonginkosi Madikizela yesterday.
The 2016 Community Survey showed the population of the Western Cape had increased to 6.3 million this year, up from 5.8 million in 2011, making it the fourth most populated province in South Africa. The number of households was also up, from 1.6 million in 2011, to 1.9 million this year.
The City of Cape Town is the largest district with the highest number of households, followed by the Cape Winelands. The Western Cape saw a net migration of more than a million people between 2011 and 2016.
Risenga Maluleke, Stats SA’s deputy director-general of statistical collection and outreach, said people chose the Western Cape over other provinces because they saw it as offering better jobs and educational opportunities.
This resulted in 422 050 people emigrating from the province, but 1.6 million arriving from elsewhere.
But Maluleke pointed out that black people accounted for the largest growth in employment, at 9.8 percent, followed by Indians or Asians at 6.4 percent, whites at 2.1 percent and coloured people at 0.95 percent.
About three quarters of households had access to piped water inside their homes, and 93.2 percent of households had access to drinking water.
More than 90 percent of households used electricity for cooking and lighting, and 96.6 percent had access to electricity – the highest in the country.
The Western Cape also had the largest number of people living in formal housing at 82.4 percent. 16.6 percent of people live in informal dwellings, 29.6 percent of households in the province are either RDP or government subsidised, and 51.8 percent own their homes.
The province also had the largest number of rented dwellings, at 19.3 percent.
Removal of refuse at least once a week had however decreased since 2011, from 62.1 to 61.0 percent.
The number of people with pre-paid Eskom electricity had increased to 36.0 percent this year, up from 28.4 in 2014. Municipality prepaid electricity was at 50.5 percent this year. Madikizela welcomed the survey results, saying they were in line with the province’s strategies to create jobs and alleviate poverty.
The figures showed the poverty headcount in the province had decreased from 3.6 percent in 2011 to 2.7 percent this year.
Madikizela said: “If we don’t create jobs we are a nation that is about to perish, that is why job creation is at the top of our strategy. We are currently sitting with a situation where young people go to university but do not know what is available to them in the work environment. ”
But to fight the scourge of poverty, lack of education and unemployment, the country had to ensure a national improvement.
Madikizela added that the survey would help the provincial government respond to the needs of the people after the August local elections. asanda.sokanyile@inl.
Western Cape housing figures released by Stats SA