Jobs top SONA expectations

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Cape Town - COSATU on Thursday called for government to ensure the implementation of clear job-creation policies.

The trade union federation's president Sdumo Dlamini ahead of the State of the Nation Address called for President Jacob Zuma to set clear targets on the issue of job creation.

He said he was hopeful that the 500 000 jobs by year end promise could still be realized.

"If government was able to be bold enough to make that statement, we believe that something can still be done to ensure that those jobs are created," said Dlamini outside parliament.

While he has hailed government's strategy of creating jobs through the expanded public works programme, Dlamini said the pace at which jobs were created was very slow and called for private/public partnerships to ensure that more South Africans were able to get jobs beyond the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Independent Democrats leader, Patricia de Lille, said she expected Zuma to address the issue of crime, which she said was slowly starting to undermine the country's democracy.

"We need a tough stance from him and he must tell us how government plans to address the escalating violent crimes especially now that we are expecting thousands of visitors to come into our country for the World Cup," said de Lille.

Meanwhile, Zuma's wives, Nompumelelo Ntuli and Thobeka Madiba took their seats inside the National Assembly while dignitaries and cabinet ministers made their way into the national assembly.

Members of cabinet who arrived early included Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele and Home Affairs Deputy Minister Malusi Gigaba, who all arrived dressed in designer black suits. Mining magnate Patrice Motsepe arrived dressed in a dark grey suit.