South Africa’s unemployment rate edged up to 29.1 percent of the labour force in the third quarter of the year, the highest in more than 11 years, from 29 percent in the second quarter, the statistics agency said on Tuesday.

This is the highest unemployment rate since Statistics South Africa started measuring unemployment using a quarterly labour force survey in 2008, the agency said.

It said the number of jobless people in the country had increased to 6.7 million in the third quarter from 4.5 million during the same period a decade ago.

Black African #women are the most vulnerable with an #unemployment rate of over 30%. Followed by Coloureds & Indians/Asians with a rate of 23,7% & 18,2% respectively.

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— Stats SA (@StatsSA) October 29, 2019

Compared with the second quarter, the number of employed persons increased by 62,000 in the third quarter while that of the unemployed was up by 78,000 resulting in an increase of 141,000 in the labour force. 

Formal sector employment increased by 43,000, agriculture was up by 38 000 and jobs in the private household sector rose by 35,000 but the informal sector shed 53,000 jobs.

The data showed black African women were the most vulnerable with an unemployment rate of over 30 percent, while mixed race South Africans known as coloureds were sitting at a jobless rate of 23.7 percent and South Africans of Indian/Asian ancestry were at 18.2 percent.

Picture: Twitter

Statistics South Africa said the expanded unemployment rate, including people discouraged from looking for work, was unchanged at 38.5 percent in the third quarter.

People took to Twitter with their reactions;

It is sad to learn that the #unemployment rate has reached its highest level since 2008. It is even worse to note that some of our graduates will never find employment, because for over 25 years the government of the @MYANC has failed dismally to create a conducive economy😭😭😭

— ECuba bafunda Mahala! (@AndiswaMadikazi) October 29, 2019

6,7 million able-bodied people, roaming the streets aimlessly.. A ticking time bomb 💣. #unemployment

— Ms_Gupta 🇿🇦 ❤️ (@African_Spring) October 29, 2019

#unemployment I still don’t understand how the government does not want to prioritize this. This is a crisis and it needs urgent answers.

— Kamogelo Mabuse 🇿🇦 (@Kamogelo_Mabuse) October 29, 2019