Thobile Mdau is a 29 year-old from Maphotla village in Dr JS Moroka Local Municipality.

She is an unemployed graduate from the University of Mpumalanga where she studied Agriculture Crop Production.

“I can say I do not benefit anything from the government for now because I am unemployed. I do not get any salary, I do not get anything, I am just a person. We do not benefit at all because there is a lot of youth who are at home, who are not working. Based on my career, the only thing that we get from government are internships and you are only allowed to do the internship once and it lasts for a year. After the internship you do not get anything. That is the only thing we get from the Department of Agriculture,” says Mdau.

Thobile says that she does not benefit because she has tried many times to get something from the government based on her career and couldn’t get anything.

“In 25 years, some things have changed and some did not change. When we look at the things that have changed in areas that we live in, we now have tar roads, we have a lot of differences when it comes to infrastructure, we have community libraries, we have clinics, yes things have changed on that part but when looking at the other part things have not changed. We have a lot of youth that are unemployed just like me. So that hasn’t changed so far.”

Thobile’s hope for South Africa is for people to get jobs. She says the government can change the system of giving internships and learnerships instead of jobs because it means people will only be employed for a year and go back home thereafter.

“Remember that you are not allowed to be on an internship more than once. So it means you will gain a skill and go back home with your skill and you won’t be using it anywhere else,” says Mdau.

She hopes that South Africa can change the way they do things in terms of employment.

“I gauge democracy with the red flag. We are in danger because when we look at the youth we have today, most of them are engaged in drugs and alcohol abuse and this is because they are not employed. So the government needs to be careful in terms of employment. They need to create jobs so that young people can have something to do rather than going for drugs and alcohol abuse,” says Mdau.

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