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By Gareth Cotterell

Digital Editor


ANC says it will create 2.5 million work opportunities in next five years

President Cyril Ramaphosa pledged to create 500 000 jobs a year, despite South Africa’s unemployment rate increasing in recent times.


The ANC said it will “create and sustain” 2.5 million work opportunities over the next five years. The ruling party made this promise at its 2024 election manifesto at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.

ANC promises to create jobs

It said it will achieve this by creating 500 000 jobs a year.

It said the jobs will involve delivering public goods and services in communities.

“This includes work done through the Presidential Employment Stimulus, funding to civil society through non-profit companies and organisations to provide work opportunities; expand and institutionalise the National Youth Service in partnership with the SANDF, and work opportunities for unemployed graduates.”

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The ANC said it will also increase support for small businesses and entrepreneurs, and will focus on townships and villages. It will also keep opportunities for women, youth and persons with disabilities.

President Cyril Ramaphosa said recent graduates and unemployed doctors will be prioritised. He also promised that 10 000 new police members will be recruited and IT professionals will get jobs at the Home Affairs Department.

Ramaphosa on struggling economy

President Cyril Ramaphosa blamed both internal and external factors for South Africa’s struggling economy. While he acknowledged the effects of state capture, the unrest in July 2021 and load shedding on slow economic growth, the president also said Covid-19, global conflict and climate change played a role.

“This has tested our democracy, resilience and leadership. Despite these hurdles, we have focused our efforts on mitigating their impact and paving the way for recovery and job creation,” he said.

Another part of the ANC’s plan to create jobs is to work with the private sector to boost employment.

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R350 social grant

The president also said the government will continue to provide the R350 social grant and spoke about how some South Africans are reliant on it.

“Some are buying food with it. Others are using it to look for jobs. Others are starting their own business. Some buy beer, but it’s fine,” he said.

Unemployment rate

A few days before Ramaphosa made these promises on creating jobs, South Africa’s unemployment rate increased to 32.1%.

The data from StatsSA also showed that half of the industries in South Africa had recorded job losses.

The formal sector shed 128 000 jobs in the fourth quarter, followed by agriculture that shed 35 000, while the informal sector added 124 000 jobs and private households 18 000. 

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