As South Africa’s economy recovers from COVID-19’s detrimental impacts, high unemployment rates are being felt by the country’s municipalities all across.
As per the South African Local Government Association, job losses directly are being blamed for a severe drop in collections.
Presenting to parliament, Stella Mondlane of SALGA said that the high unemployment rate has resulted in a steep decline in municipal revenue collection. “It was at 93% in 2019 and it has declined to about 20% in 2020, this has resulted in an R4.3 billion loss.”
She added that without work and steady income, residents are struggling with making ends meet to pay their bills.“This situation was exacerbated by the pandemic, which has led to increased expenditure demands on services such as water and sanitation,” added Mondlane.
She said that the association is worried as the losses come against a hike in the cost of basic services, aided by unpaid debt owed to municipalities by the respective communities they serve.
On the other hand, despite Covid-19 and accompanying lockdowns, various international markets are seeing a surge in recruitment as companies seek a rebound.
Rob Ridout, the international job search consultant, said professionals are seeking employment abroad for various reasons. He said that mainlythey wish to live somewhere safer, where there is not only a better security scenario but also greater financial stability. People in SouthAfrica fear that, under current local conditions, they will lose their jobs and will remain unemployed for a very long period.
“Many, at the executive level, see the door to career progression getting shut as local businesses continue to contract,” he said.
“International recruitment, by comparison, is thriving and big economies like Germany and the Netherlands are posting thousands of job ads on the web that the locals are going for.”
Ridout said that top positions that the locals are going for include IT, medical, engineering, logistics, and management roles.