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Zuma: Nedlac looking at youth subsidy

May 17 2012 10:31 Sapa

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Johannesburg - The youth wage subsidy was currently before the National Economic Development and Labour Council, President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday.

It would make final recommendations to cabinet, he said at a breakfast business briefing in Mangaung.

Zuma said the challenge was to find common ground between the opposing views on the subsidy.

"Discussions (on the youth wage subsidy) are now in the economic sector and are part of a multi-pronged strategy to deal with youth unemployment."

He condemned the violence that took place in Johannesburg on Tuesday when the Democratic Alliance tried to march to the Congress of SA Trade Unions' headquarters.

The DA has accused Cosatu of blocking the subsidy's implementation and costing young people jobs. Cosatu maintains the subsidy will displace existing jobs and enrich employers.

"Violence is not acceptable and I hope this is not going to be repeated again," Zuma said.

Both sides were at fault in Tuesday's protest, he said.

"We are a democratic country and that means we have a constitutional right to protest, provided it does not interfere with the rights of people trying to go about their business," he said.

In his speech to Free State business and political leaders, the president also raised the stalemate in the appointment of the head of the African Union Commission.

Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma is one of two candidates in line for the job, which will be decided on in July.

"South Africa has no intention of dominating the AU," he said, adding that South Africa would respect the AU's decision.

When asked about his willingness to serve a second term as South Africa's leader, Zuma said his appointment was at the ANC's discretion.

"It is not up to the individual to say what they want or that they will lead the ANC."

Zuma did say he had not wanted to run for the first term as president, but was duty bound as an ANC member, and had to obey the party's calling.

He also answered questions on issues including housing delivery, crime on the Lesotho border, xenophobia, agriculture, and lack of opportunities for black lawyers.

"What I hate in government is how slowly its wheels turn. Bureaucracy delays delivery."

The slow delivery of infrastructure was of personal concern and he was holding monthly meetings with department heads to keep track of delivery. 

cosatu  |  da  |  nedlac  |  jacob zuma  |  youth wage subsidy
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