Gauteng Community Safety MEC Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane on Tuessday reassured the public that student l.
At Hout Bay's small community employment centre, programme manager Tania Bownes sighs as she contemplates the 300 domestic workers and glut of gardeners on her list of jobseekers.
But there are only a handful of carpenters, stonemasons and seamstresses - all the plumbers and electricians have been snapped up.
"We have a vast pool of labour but a real lack of trained workers," said Bownes, whose WorkNow project tries to find jobs for unemployed blacks living in an impoverished suburb of this otherwise wealthy town. "Skilled artisans are like gold."
Bownes said that although many young people in the community are eager to be trained as carpenters or plumbers, they don't have the money for the bus fare to Cape Town training centres and would lose desperately needed cash if they were at school instead of doing casual work.
"We see a lot of certificates in travel and tourism," said Bownes about the job bank. "But there is a need for more practical training so they can go out and fix the toilet tomorrow.
"There may seem to be a lot of glamour in a head office but the money is in the practical work."
The paradox in Hout Bay is witnessed throughout South Africa as the country struggles with estimated 40percent unemployment rate coupled with shortages in almost every profession and craft.
The government wants to train 50000 artisans by 2010. This will require an annual increase of 7500 artisans; more than double the number of students in higher levels of school and training for one million people; and a dramatic increase in the number of engineering graduates. - AP