Just last week stats were released to indicate that unemployment had eased, albeit ever so slightly. Now there seems to be questions about those figures. It seems there might be a lot of temporary employment that has distorted the figures.
I was not that excited about the improvement claimed. Nowhere near enough to sort out the unemployment problems of the country, but at least it seemed a step in the right direction.Statistics South Africa reported last week that there were 544 000 new jobs in the year to March and noted a "slightly upward trend" in employment after about 700 000 jobs were lost between 2001 and 2003.
"In the previous survey ... it was reported that 138 000 jobs had been lost in agriculture. A finding that 147 000 new job opportunities were created immediately thereafter, seems extremely suspect," Lourie Bosman, president of farmers' union AgriSA, said in a statement.
"It simply makes no economic sense that a sector that shows no growth can create jobs on such a massive scale," he said, adding that nearly half of the 1,3-million jobs in agriculture were temporary.
Labour federation the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu), a political ally of the ruling African National Congress and frequent critic of government policies, highlighted that about 130 000 jobs were lost in the period surveyed.
full story from M&G here
Now it seems that the figures need to be qualified - a fact that Stats SA should have pointed out.