By Staff Writers

Maseru, Dec 04 (The Night’s Watch) – According to the latest Afrobaromer survey, about eight out of ten Basotho see government’s efforts in addressing the rising youth unemployment as inadequate.

The survey shows that a majority of Basotho expect more effective government action to address the needs of youth. This is twinned with the willingness to pay more taxes if that would mean funding for initiatives to help young people, especially through job creation.

“Six in 10 citizens (60 percent) say they would favour paying higher taxes in order to support programs to help young people,” said Afrobaromer in a news release.

“If the government could increase its spending on programs to help young people, job-creation initiatives would be citizens’ highest priority,” it added.

The findings, based on data collected between February and March 2020, were published on Thursday.

“Seven in 10 Basotho (71 percent) believe the government has handled the dispute with teachers badly,” said Afrobaromer.

It added that an overwhelming majority (81 percent) of Basotho support the teachers’ action, including 70 percent who say they “strongly support” it.

The restive Lesotho teachers initially went on strike in February 2019, to force government to address their long-standing demands for salary increments and improved working conditions.

They also want the government to weed out ghost workers from the payroll.

They only called off the job action after the government promised to address their grievances, towards the end of the year.

“These findings suggest that Basotho want a less intransigent government response that will end the long-running dispute with teachers and address critical education and youth development needs of the population,” Afrobarometer said.

The Afrobarometer findings arise from data collected during February and March 2020 as part of regular public attitude polls on governance and democracy since 2000.

It is based on face-to-face interviews with 1,200 adult Basotho, representative of the country’s population in their language of choice. NW

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