Sport keeps idle hands busy

Mhlaba Memela

Mhlaba Memela

As youth unemployment figures escalate in KwaZulu-Natal, leaders in the province are using sport to lure young people away from crime.

Sakhi Siyaya, chairman of the Zululand Youth Council, said yesterday that their intention was to "keep youth busy and not idle".

He said the Zululand district had a 40percent unemployment rate and 75 to 85percent of the region's population was HIV-positive.

"Our youth are frustrated. Hundreds have completed their matric, but cannot find proper jobs. Women are resorting to prostitution to make a living," he said.

Siyaya said the organisation encouraged youth to take part in sports to keep their minds occupied.

"This works and many find they can let out their frustrations on the sports field. But not everyone wants to play sport and we do have a problem for the future," he said.

Siyaya called on the government to "revisit its youth structures" in its efforts to help young people.