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By Peter Mothiba

This week’s march by unemployed medical doctors to the Union Buildings demanding jobs is very sad indeed.

Studying and ultimately qualifying as a medical doctor was regarded as the greatest achievement in the townships and rural areas of South Africa during the days of apartheid.

During those days most parents secretly or openly wanted their children to be medical doctors.

But the medical profession is no longer held in high esteem, especially by the government.

If the government really cared about this noble profession and the people who hold qualifications in it, then it would have provided all the unemployed doctors with jobs before this matter even got the attention of the general public.

What makes the situation of unemployed doctors more painful is that doctors from other parts of the world have been employed at public hospitals while they as South African-born citizens are denied those employment opportunities.

The painful situation in which unemployed medical doctors find themselves is a cruel reminder that in South Africa unemployment can affect anyone irrespective of their academic qualifications.

Unemployment in South Africa is like death and disease: anyone can fall victim in this regard.

Now going forward, how will the youth of this country ever wish to become medical doctors seeing that chances of them being employed in the profession are very slim.

The present high unemployment rate in this country is in direct contrast to the state of affairs during the days of apartheid.

Job opportunities were galore for anyone who was an adult to the extent that those who didn’t want to get a job were actually arrested, charged, found guilty and sentenced to jail terms.

Now the most fashionable thing is to get a government tender, perform some shoddy workmanship on some project, chow most of the money intended for the said project and forget about every body else except one’s close family members and hangers-on.

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