SOUTH Africa’s unemployment rate soared to 27.6 percent in the first quarter of 2019 .This is according to reports published early this week by the country’s National statistical agency. Comparatively to the 27.1 percent of the fourth quarter of last year, the rate has increased by half percentage point.
According to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey for the first quarter, there are 16.3 million employed people and 6.2 million unemployed people compared to 6.1 million at the end of December.
Most of those unemployed fall between the ages of 15 and 64 years in South Africa. This is bad news for the African National Congress (ANC), which has just won the parliamentary elections on May 8, retaining its power acquired since 1994.
On Wednesday, Cyril Ramaphosa assured that the high level of unemployment in his country will be a thing of the past because it gives him sleepless night.
The South African President promised to accelerate reforms to get his country’s economy back on track. He pledged to particularly clear the debts of the national electricity company, Eskom of 27 billion euros.
The South African economy is struggling due to falling commodity prices, social unrest in sectors such as mining and corruption.