Stock photo.

South Africans have the power to solve unemployment without relying on the government.

This was the message given to guests at a debate hosted by the Democracy and Development Programme (DDP), and Justin Foxton of Stop Crime, Say Hello, in Durban on Wednesday.

Believing the Each One Hire One campaign championed by a Sunday newspaper could be improved on, Foxton decided to create his own initiative, Let’s All Hire One – aimed at getting all South Africans to hire at least one person, thereby alleviating unemployment.

Foxton was disappointed with Each One Hire One, as only big businesses, trade unions, political parties and employers provided suggestions which, while necessary, would take months to implement.

He encouraged guests to come up with simple ideas to create jobs now, such as employing a “street marshal” to be in charge of keeping a residential street or a parking lot clean, or hiring someone to remove alien plants from suburban areas and be in charge of recycling.

“South Africans have the ans-wer to solve unemployment,” Foxton said.

“We all feel a sense of stress and start to believe our own mantras, like ‘South Africa is the murder capital of the world’, or ‘South Africa is turning into Zimbabwe’.

“We believe unemployment has continually risen over the past 15 years, when it has actually decreased across all race groups. There are jobs in South Africa; it’s just about finding them.”

Foxton said unemployment led to poverty, which could lead to a sense of hopelessness, which then led to anger.

“People commit crime not because they are poor, but because they feel hopeless and angry. It is critical we begin to think more laterally about job creation, because unemployment affects all of us.” -Daily News