Democratic Alliance (DA) national spokesperson Solly Malatsi said South Africa needs a plan to build an inclusive and growing economy to address the country’s highest unemployment rate since 2017.
This comes after Statistics South Africa said on Tuesday that the country’s unemployment rate had risen to 27.6% in first quarter of 2019.
Malatsi said in a statement on Tuesday that the rise in the unemployment rate meant the expanded unemployment rate increased to 38%, translating to 9.9 million unemployed people in the country.
“While the increase is marginal, it is indicative of an economy which is stagnant and shedding jobs at an alarming rate. This is compounded by a national government that is devoid of a credible, long-term plan for jobs and the economy.
“This current trajectory is unsustainable. South Africa simply cannot afford to lose any more jobs,” the statement reads.
Despite the rise in the unemployment, the DA-governed Western Cape has again bucked the unemployment trend and is the only province to decrease its expanded unemployment rate by 0.4 percentage points, Malatsi said.
“Instead of the ANC’s one-size-fits-all approach to fixing the joblessness crisis in South Africa, the DA proposes a complete reform of the economy,” Malatsi said.
South Africa’s current economic conditions are not conducive for job creation. South Africa needs an inclusive and growing economy, he added.
“It is, for this reason, the DA introduced its ‘Jobs Act’ last month. The Act advocates for the protection and support of SMMEs by ensuring greater flexibility in the labour market through minimum wage exemption for businesses that fall into certain classifications. This will guarantee that doors of thousands of small businesses remain open and protect thousands of jobs.
“The Act will also do away with all unnecessary red tape that small businesses still have to comply with, this will make it easier for entrepreneurs to set up shop. In addition to this, the DA’s Jobs Act will ensure the creation of a special forum for dispute resolution specifically for SMMEs.”