Job Creation and Growing Economies writes Robert Shivambu

It’s election season in South Africa and a lot of promises are being made about job creation by politicians and some of these promises will not materialize. So let me state clearly that politicians don’t create jobs, in fact they destroy easy jobs in the economy because municipal by-laws don’t want street vendors and police are always removing street vendors on our roads, and I am going to explain my point. It’s not rocket science, it is basic economics.

A few weeks ago, I visited my favorite province of Mpumalanga for our annual family holiday. We drove from Giyani on Thursday 23 September through The Tzeenen Phalaborwa road then Bushbuckridge road. When we were approaching Bushbuckridge, I knew that I was craving real fire-grilled chicken and pap. I knew that I DID NOT WANT Nandos because it is available everywhere.

I just wanted real chicken made by real people on the roadside. With the real smoke flavour. You know the township way of doing things right? So just before Acornhoek Shopping mall at the traffic circle to enter the Mall, my wish became a reality. There are local people there, women and men, running a local chicken grilling business and they use their unique spices to add great taste to their chicken. Much better than Nandos if you ask me. Those guys make the best chicken in town and I was thoroughly satisfied by the food. Their chicken is real deal and they are known in town for their good chicken.

The employment Part

Here is what I discovered when I was following my craving for roadside chicken. This particular chicken place is so busy that these guys are barely coping to supply customers. I was there for about 20 minutes waiting for my chicken order after purchasing. While I was waiting for my order, I realized that these guys sell about 10 chickens in 4 Minutes or less.

The place is so busy it is unbelievable because their chicken is so amazingly tasty. I think their full chicken is about 100 with pap and gravy. Now count R100 x 10. That’s 1k in 4 minutes. Okay? Pay attention to that. Let’s say they sell 100 chickens a day. How much is that? That’s R10,000.00 in one day.

That is employment and growing the economy right there with Chicken. There is no better way of understanding this story. These guys are not asking the ANC, DA or EFF to employ them. They are simply employing themselves. So instead of promising people jobs that will never materialize, because this economy is not growing enough to create meaningful jobs, why can’t these politicians make sure that they promise to create a conducive environment for people to run small business on the side of the road like selling chicken and pap?

Is that hard to do? Every single day, we see metro police confiscating goods from street vendors because because small business runners are not allowed to trade in front of shopping malls and roads yet politicians never say anything about this discrimination. But today, politicians are promising people jobs.

Politicians don’t create jobs. Theirs is policy making to allow people to create employment for themselves. That is how economies work. The story of the chicken that I discovered in Acornhoek is all over South Africa. You can find it in Giyani, Matatiele, Mdantsane, Malamulele, Soweto and many other places.

This also applies to motor mechanical engineers who operate on the backyards of their houses or roadside. People wake up early everyday to go to work and try and change their social economic conditions against all odds, but we have the most incompetent political system all over the world that is failing them.Use your vote wisely.

By Robert Shivambu – Journalist, Researcher, Media and Communication Strategist, International Relations and Global Issues

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