Ramaphosa’s 2024 SONA Emphasises Significance Of Job Creation


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With South Africa's unemployment rate at 32% and youth unemployment at 43.4%, President Ramaphosa's emphasis on job creation underscores the urgent need for economic growth and innovative solutions. The president highlighted the importance of job creation during his 2024 SONA speech. 


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President Cyril Ramaphosa revealed that 4.3 million young people have signed up for the SAYouth.mobi service. Through signing up for the platform 1.6 million youth have secured opportunities. 

The president made this revelation in the State of The National (SONA) address on Thursday evening when highlighting the importance of job creation in South Africa. South Africa's unemployment rate, hovering around 32%, demonstrates the imperative need for economic growth and effective solutions.

With over 4.6 million unemployed youth and a youth unemployment rate of 43.4%, the need for programmes that combat youth employment is paramount. The SAYouth.mobi service is a free online portal connecting young people to various opportunities. The service is zero-rated meaning it does not require data to use. 

Youth can sign up on the SAYouth.mobi service as their first step to finding a load of job opportunities. The platform connects youth to the YES program, Full-time jobs, Part-time jobs, Learnerships, Volunteering and learning opportunities.

While the president spoke at length about how government policies and interventions helped millions of vulnerable South Africans through the telling of a story, Ramaphosa acknowledged the challenge of youth unemployment in the country. 

Ramaphosa mentioned several programmes introduced by the government in recent years to combat unemployment including the President Youth Employment Initiative (PYEI). 

Through the Presidential Employment Stimulus, we have created more than 1.7 million work and livelihood opportunities 

Through the PYEI, more than one million job opportunities were created for youth in schools across the country. These young people were employed as teaching assistants and general school assistants. 

The President challenges members of the public to find out how these youth assisted teachers and contributed to schools by inquiring about their impact. 

If you go around our country, and you talk to school principals, you talk to school teachers, they will tell you how beneficial this programme has been in assisting them in their schools but more importantly how beneficial this programme has been to these young people who are being introduced to the world of work. 

Ramaphosa explained that the PYEI has provided youth with earning opportunities while also improving educational outcomes at schools. 

These programmes matter because work matters to people 

The president revealed that the NYDA has also played a key role in assisting young people to start their own businesses. 

They explained that having a job and income remains fundamental to how people see themselves and their self-worth, dignity, hope, purpose and inclusion.

Ramaphosa says several companies in the private sector have joined the government's efforts to combat youth unemployment as they see the need to join in the task of creating job opportunities for young people. 

How Young People Can Sign Up For SAYOUTH.Mobi

  1. Go to the SAYouth website
  2. You will need your South African ID number, which includes citizens, permanent residents, or refugee numbers.
  3. Follow the prompts - enter your employment status if asked

You can cancel, continue, or delete your account whenever you feel like you change your number, please inform the network. Keep your phone on and be ready to receive notifications from the network. If you need assistance, you can call the toll-free support line at 0800 72 72 72.

30 Years Of Democracy

Ramaphosa began his SONA speech acknowledging the nation's struggle for freedom. The 2024 SONA speech is taking place 30 years after the country’s first democratic elections.  

The president explained that when former President Nelson Mandela cast his ballot in 1994, it was the beginning of a new era and not just a ballot that was put in ballot boxes, but a dream that South Africa belongs to all.

After casting his ballot, Madiba said 

This is the beginning of a new era. We have moved from an era of pessimism, division, limited opportunities, turmoil and conflict. We are starting a new era of hope, reconciliation and nation-building.

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