Knives out for premier af­ter mas­sive job losses

The Citizen (KZN) - - News - Alex Mat­lala

Op­po­si­tion par­ties in Lim­popo are bay­ing for premier Stan Matha­batha’s blood af­ter the South African Quar­terly Labour Sur­vey showed that Lim­popo recorded the high­est job losses than any other prov­ince in the last quar­ter of the last fi­nan­cial year.

The stats in­di­cated that dur­ing the last three months of 2019, about 35 000 more people lost their jobs in Lim­popo. To rub salt into the wound, the stats also re­vealed that more than 77 000 people have since lost their jobs in the prov­ince last year – a move that sent shock waves through the prov­ince.

The largest ex­panded un­em­ploy­ment rate, rose 2.1% to 44%.

The to­tal Lim­popo labour force was recorded at 1.821 mil­lion people and out of these, 391 000 in­di­vid­u­als were un­able to find work, while 531 000 per­sons have given up look­ing for a job al­to­gether, re­vealed the stats. The rev­e­la­tion has opened a de­bate among par­ties and in­di­vid­u­als in the prov­ince.

The DA said it was time for the ANC gov­ern­ment in Lim­popo to do in­tro­spec­tion on the kind of ser­vice it pro­vides.

DA pro­vin­cial leader, Jac­ques

Smalle, said yes­ter­day the stats proved that the people of Lim­popo were faced with an acute bleak eco­nomic outlook. He said the stats were a di­rect re­sult by the ANC gov­ern­ment’s dis­as­trous man­age­ment of the econ­omy.

“Un­der Premier Stan Matha­batha, the ex­ec­u­tive con­tin­ues to spend state funds ir­reg­u­larly and reck­lessly. This re­sulted in the prov­ince ex­pe­ri­enc­ing an acute un­em­ploy­ment rate, [more] than any prov­ince in the coun­try. Dur­ing the past 12 months, Lim­popo’s un­em­ploy­ment rate in­creased by 6.6%, from 16.5% in Oc­to­ber to De­cem­ber 2018 to 23.1% for the same pe­riod in 2019,” said Smalle.

The Eco­nomic Free­dom Fight­ers, the of­fi­cial op­po­si­tion in the prov­ince, said it was time for Matha­batha’s ex­ec­u­tive to shape up or ship out.

“We can­not af­ford to be led by a gov­ern­ment that takes jobs away from its people,” said EFF pro­vin­cial sec­re­tary, Ge­orge Raphela.

Matha­batha’s spokesper­son, Kenny Mathivha, said this was due to the fact that the prov­ince was still suf­fer­ing from the “Ban­tus­tan era” and the many im­mi­grants from Zim­babwe, Botswana and Mozam­bique, who com­pete for the few avail­able jobs in the agri­cul­tural sec­tor.

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