Work opportunities

Job creation through EPWP

Job creation through EPWP
Creating jobs

Unemployment and poverty are South Africa’s terrible twins. The social risks of a restive, unemployed workforce are legion, and creating jobs is a challenge. Yet the City of Tshwane has made big strides in rolling out a massive job creation project as part of the EPWP.

The EPWP emphasises the use of an appropriate mix of labour and machines, with a preference for labour where technically and economically feasible, without compromising the quality of the product.

The programme targets all spheres of government and state-owned enterprises and any other private entities that wish to partner with the government to follow the national transformation agenda.

The EPWP is aimed at:

  • Creating jobs;
  • Restoring the dignity of marginalised communities by giving them opportunities to earn an income and support their dependents;
  • Creating and maintaining socially and economically useful infrastructure;
  • Alleviating unemployment and reducing poverty; and
  • Providing workplace experience and contributing to skills development.

Tshwane has established an EPWP unit in the office of the city manager to co-ordinate EPWP projects in Tshwane as initiated by departments and municipal entities.

The unit has developed a policy to guide the EPWP rollout. For the EPWP to be effective, the programme needs to be incorporated in all activities of the municipality.

This requires that every project, as per the integrated development plan, should promote EPWP principles and restructure project activities to facilitate and create greater employment opportunities per unit of expenditure, where possible.

The EPWP remains a key initiative in empowering communities while rolling out much-needed infrastructure.

In the 2011/12 financial year, 38 000 job opportunities were envisaged, and for the political term of office ending in 2016 the target is 375 000 job opportunities.

The job opportunities are going to be created through the implementation of projects in the infrastructure, environment, culture and social sectors.

Tshwane has already set aside R60 million for an EPWP project known as ‘Vat Alles’, aimed at ensuring a cleaner city, rivers, stadiums and taxi ranks.

Tshwane has also received grant funding of R10.1 million from the national department of public works for the current financial year. The purpose of the grant is to reward municipalities that are maximising job creation while implementing the EPWP. 

The City of Tshwane will use the funding to create 1 000 job opportunities for 12 months in the following projects or programmes: cleaning of the Nooitgedacht Dam in Region 1; beautification and maintenance of municipal property in Region 7; and trimming of trees and clearing servitudes at electricity infrastructure by the infrastructure development department.

Some of these projects have already produced excellent results. The department of housing’s R42 million project to construct a street and storm water drainage system in Soshanguve block MM, block PP2 and block XX is currently under way. It created about 106 work opportunities.

Other projects include the construction of sewer and water reticulation in Eersterust where about R34 million has been budgeted for.

Around 3 025 households will be connected to the mainstream sewer system when the project is completed in October. 

The installation of electricity for more than 6 000 stands in Brazaville (a settlement in Tshwane) has been divided in two phases and has so far employed around 26 beneficiaries who are also receiving on-the-job training.

Most participants in the EPWP have reaped benefits from being part of this venture. They do not have to travel long distances to work because the projects are carried out in their residential areas; in fact, they seldom have transport costs.

 

 

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