Only foreigners get thesejobs as waiters

I LIVE in Midrand and in between recessions I visit upmarket eating establishments in my area.

I LIVE in Midrand and in between recessions I visit upmarket eating establishments in my area.

I have observed that every time I spend my skilfully diverted cash at these establishments, I am served very politely by a worker with a foreign accent, most often a Zimbabwean.

I questioned a manager about this and she was quick to defend herself: "South Africans never apply so we have no option but to employ foreigners ."

I refuse to believe that. Close to Midrand are Tembisa and Diepsloot, where most people are desperate for work.

But let's for a moment assume it was true. I asked a number of foreign waiters what their average salary was and the answer was breathtakingly common. They don't earn any wages. All those hours worked and they are at the mercy of patrons for tips. Would this not explain why South Africans, though desperate, would turn down these jobs?

Now, should I stop dining at all such establishments and threaten "militant action" or simply increase the size of my tip?

What I do know for a fact is that when desperate South African shack-dwellers in Diepsloot turn against their foreign neighbours with rage, armchair millionaire critics who own upmarket establishments are the first to label them "xenophobic barbarians".

Eddie Carrel Gaffane, Midrand

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