Tuesday, August 09, 2022

Eastern Cape Province

With a population of 6.9-million, the Eastern Cape has around 15% of the national population but contributes only 7.5% to South Africa’s GDP.

Predominantly a rural province, unemployment for ethnic groups are: 60.6% black, 7.3% white, 37.1% coloured, 16.3% Asian. This results in vast inequalities between the different groupings.

64% of the population earn less than R9600 per annum (that’s less than US$25 per week).

Households are most likely to invest in funerals, reflecting HIV & AIDS.

In rural areas, especially former Ciskei and Transkei, a third of households are headed by women over 65.

There is a lack of productive economic activity in the Province, which leads to the dependence of a majority of the population on social grants and remittances. 22% of households receive social grants (child support most common).

87.3% of households have access to primary schools, 78.2% access to Junior Secondary Schools and 63.2% access to Senior Secondary Schools. The most common reason for non-attendance is inability to afford school fees.

Many schools excess the required 40 learners per teacher. In Mthatha District, numbers reach 152 learners per teacher.

There is a huge gap between rural and urban levels of development with Nelson Mandela Metropole accounting for nearly half of the provincial GDP, and the Metropole and Buffalo City (East London area) accounting for two thirds of the provinces GDP.

The HIV and AIDS pandemic poses the greatest development challenge for the Province. The CADRE report for the Eastern Cape AIDS Council (ECAC) estimates the HIV prevalence rate in the Eastern Cape to be between 8% to 11%, especially growing faster among the youth. In 2006, AIDS accounted for 64% of all deaths in the age band of 15 – 49 (2007 – 2014 Multi Sectoral HIV and AIDS Framework, 2007).