Pretoria — The Community Work Programme (CWP) aims to create one million work opportunities by the 2018/19 financial year, covering all local municipalities, Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Lechesa Tsenoli announced on Friday.
"The department will spend R2.5 billion in 2015/16 to provide 202 000 work opportunities and R3.7 billion in 2016/17 to provide one million work opportunities across local municipalities," the minister said. Minister Tsenoli was speaking during a Post State of the Nation Address (SoNA) briefing on local government.
The CWP is a key government initiative aimed at mobilising communities to provide regular and predictable work opportunities at the local government level.
"The purpose of the programme is to provide an employment safety net for those without access to opportunities designed to lift them out of poverty," he said.
The programme also provides access to a minimum level of regular work, two days a week; 8 days a month; and 100 days a year at a wage rate presently set at R71 a day.
Minister Tsenoli said the programme recognises that policies to address unemployment and create decent work will take time to reach people living in marginalised areas where few opportunities exist.
According to the Minister, the CWP is now being implemented in every district across the country, including the 23 Cabinet Priority Districts.
He said the programme has been implemented in 76 of the department's 105 priority municipalities in the short-term, while in the medium-term; all municipalities in the country will have at least one CWP site.
The minister said the department will spend R2.7 billion in the 2014/2015 period to create 332 000 work opportunities covering all municipalities.
"Against a target of 171 500 in the current financial year, the programme has created 206 000 work opportunities. Over the last five years the programme has grown significantly.
"In 2009/10 we set a target of 10 000 participants; but reached 55 582 participants by the end of March 2010, exceeding its revised targets," he said.
In the 2010/11 financial year, the minister said the programme reached 89 689 participants in 45 municipalities across the nine provinces, adding that 65% of the participants were women and 59 % were young people.
The programme reached 105 218 participants far exceeding the targeted 69 120 in 2011/12, while in 2012/13, the programme reached 204 494 against a target of 171 500 across the country in 140 municipalities.
"In 2013/14, the programme reached 206 166 participants against a target of 172 000 across the country also in 140 municipalities," the minister said.