Mashatile promises 100,000 jobs for young people with new SANSI programme

Deputy President Paul Mashatile has launched a new jobs initiative that will hopefully help 100,000 youths obtain employment by the end of the fiscal year. Picture: X/The Presidency

Deputy President Paul Mashatile has launched a new jobs initiative that will hopefully help 100,000 youths obtain employment by the end of the fiscal year. Picture: X/The Presidency

Published May 22, 2024


Government has launched a new National Youth Service (NYS) initiative which aims to help address the major unemployment issue in South Africa.

The initiative was launched on Tuesday by Deputy President Paul Mashatile.

Mashatile, together with the Department of Defence and the Department of Women, Youth, and Persons with Disabilities (DWYPD), unveiled the South African National Service Institution (SANSI) in Pretoria on Tuesday.

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF)-led NYS programme is a special project that will be piloted in the country’s poorest districts, where there is large unemployment.

“I am pleased that the DWYPD, in collaboration with the Department of Defence, adopted a whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach to the skills revolution for the unskilled,” Mashatile said

“This will have a significant impact on restoring livelihoods, creating wealth, and alleviating poverty and hunger among the marginalised,” he added

Last week, Statistics South Africa said in the Quarterly Labour Force Survey, that the official unemployment rate stands at 32.9%.

According to the survey, around 3.6 million (35.5%) out of 10.3 million young people aged between 15 and 24 were not in employment or have an education or training programme underneath their belt.

Mashatile said that it was government’s plan to better use their resources to help spearhead projects that make an impactful difference to the country’s poorest and most vulnerable citizens.

“We envisaged inviting and encouraging young people to voluntarily join the National Youth Service, beginning with a character-building programme and progressing to industry demand-based education and training, ultimately leading to gainful employment or entrepreneurship,” he explained.

100,000 jobs

The creation of SANSI will help capacitate and empower unemployed Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) and university graduates.

The programme will also help funnel graduates through a pipeline that will lead to innovative entrepreneurship and sustainable employment.

Government said that the initiative will include food and agricultural value chain commercialisation, maritime and ocean economy, engineering and construction, and manufacturing and infrastructure rollouts.

Mashatile said that the provincial launches of these programmes will follow in the next few weeks and government hopes to reach at least 100,000 youth participants in the current fiscal year.

He called for all South Africans to support the SANSI programmes.

“The youth must take advantage of the opportunity presented by the programme to equip themselves with the much-needed skills,” he concluded.

Minister of Defence Thandi Modise described SANSI as a necessary and important initiative.

“We see SANSI as that instrument in the hands of the Defence Force that will enable our children to come into their own,” Modise added.

Labour Activation Programme

This is not the only programme government has created in the first few months of 2024, as the country heads to the May 29 Elections.

In April, Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi announced that government would implement a new training for employment and entrepreneurship programme.

Nxesi said that the UIF’s Labour Activation Programme (LAP) will be first launched in Gauteng with the provincial government, and then it would be progressively rolled out during April throughout the country.

In May, eight LAP service providers in the Northern Cape pledged to provide training for around 23,000 young South Africans.

The training will focus on sectors including agriculture, construction, hospitality, security, energy, call centres, and new venture creations.