Mass unemployment a time bomb

THE unemployment rate in the country is a ticking time bomb that could cause damage if it is not addressed

This was the warning from economist Mike Schussler at the 10th South African employment report in Johannesburg yesterday.

Schussler said one of the problems was that skilled people were sitting around unemployed because of ethnicity. He appealed to the government to loosen labour laws.

"The employment situation is a ticking time bomb and the fuse is getting shorter by the day. I think the focus should be on how to create employment for South Africans," Schussler said.

He said the government should rather create an environment in which people are given enough room to come up with ways of creating employment.

"If a backyard mechanic has the potential of employing people, why not support him instead of shutting him down. Even if some organisation, like the AWB for example, manage to create employment for people, let's rather look at finding ways of ensuring that they work under good conditions. People need to make a living and have a sense of pride," he said.

During the report it was pointed out that while the literacy level in the country has improved, the problem still lies with people of between 15 and 64 finding employment.

"We need people in specialised education. There is a great need for artisans, programmers and the like."

In a newsletter article, Cosatu spokesperson Patrick Craven said: "Unless we solve the problem of mass unemployment . for young people, there will be a tsunami of revolt from people with no hope."

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.