President Cyril Ramaphosa admits SA will not achieve the unemployment target in the National Development Plan “unless we do something extraordinary”. And yet, by outsourcing such a fundamentally important project as the jobs summit to the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) and its by-invitation-only participants, the president condemned it to the ordinary. Where were the big ideas? Where were the best and the brightest minds from SA, the continent, the world? Where was the hard discussion about the future of work, AI (artificial intelligence) and the sharing economy? Where was the understanding — humbling as it may be — that big government, big labour and big business have too many vested interests and are too far removed from what it takes to create a job in a market economy? Instead, we’re told that among other things, the government will “identify existing interventions across government and the private sector and create a coherent platform to enhance acces...

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