New wage subsidy under discussion

Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe has revealed that discussions on the proposed youth wage subsidy are underway with key stakeholders to address joblessness in the country.

Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe

He said the proposal was tabled before the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) on May 10, indicating that the four chambers in Nedlac were treating the matter with a sense of urgency.

Apart from Nedlac, he said that they had also discussed the matter with the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA).

 The Deputy President said this while responding to a number of questions in the National Council of Provinces on Tuesday.

Once implemented, the subsidy should reach a large number of youth and would focus on formal employment, which could be properly monitored.

Motlanthe said the scheme should help inexperienced youth get jobs and also support labour intensive areas.

However, he warned that it should not be used to encourage young people to leave school to get jobs or for employers to sign up youngsters who should be in school.

The Deputy President indicated that increasing job opportunities in rural areas was also one of the government’s top priorities.

He said that the Expanded Public Works Programmes were progressively creating direct jobs in provinces such as KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo and Mpumalanga.

Asked on where children of farm dwellers were categorised (rural or urban), Motlanthe said that was an issue they were “grappling with”.

He raised concern on the conditions of farm dwellers, as many did not have fixed homes. He said farm dwellers should be able to apply for RDP houses and their children attend school.

Motlanthe said in most cases, when the workers were fired from their jobs, they ended up homeless.

Source:- BuaNews – 15 Nov 2011 – Francis Hweshe