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Fears that some SASSA beneficiaries will not get paid next month

Cash paypoints across the country have been closed due to the unrest
Pensioners braved icy cold conditions as they stood in line outside Marshalltown Post Office to collect their grants on Wednesday, 7 July. Archive Image: Masego Mafata

The suspension of cash payments to social grant beneficiaries across the country will be devastating should the unrest continue, says General Moyo of the #PayTheGrants campaign and member of the Fight Inequality Alliance.

“Not only for those who were receiving or relying on the Social Relief of Distress grant, but many pensioners and disabled people; many that are not able to access their money otherwise,” he said.

On Monday, the SA Social Security Agency (SASSA) announced that Cash-In-Transit (CIT) services to paypoints have been suspended indefinitely due to the unrest mostly concentrated in Gauteng and KZN. SASSA said this was to ensure the safety of beneficiaries and those in the CIT industry, especially those in “high-risk areas”.

Beneficiaries with SASSA cards are still able to access their social grants through ATMs, and at merchants and Post Offices, said Western Cape SASSA spokesperson Shivani Wahab. “The closure of the cash pay points does not equate to clients being denied access to their social grants,” said Wahab. She also said that beneficiaries in the Western Cape have already been paid out for the July cycle.

The KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng SASSA spokespersons referred GroundUp to the national office. In response to several questions, national spokesperson Kgomoco Diseko said that SASSA operations will resume once the situation has calmed down and “new payment dates will be communicated”. It is still unclear how payments to beneficiaries will be made next month as in many areas in the two provinces all the stores and ATMs have been destroyed.

However, Moyo said that the signs of unrest were clear before it started and was a ticking time-bomb. The #PayTheGrants campaign has been advocating for the introduction of a Basic Income grant after the R350 Covid-19 SRD grant was terminated in April.

Another #PayTheGrants member, July Eccles, said, “The most vulnerable members of society will suffer. The burden that the pandemic placed squarely on the shoulders of the poor and working class, the chronic levels of youth unemployment, and overall joblessness being at its highest ever, have not been responded to with any sense of urgency by the government.”

In a statement on Wednesday, the C19 People’s Coalition also called on the government that among other issues to resolve the unrest it should “reinstate the Covid-19 SRD grant for the unemployed and caregivers, at an increased amount of R585. Also ensure that SASSA offices are opened and protected and move rapidly to an expanded Basic Income Guarantee at minimum R1 268”.

© 2021 GroundUp.This article was first published here.

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That is what they voted for.

Perhaps they could go to Nkandla for help and relief ?

They must feel it in their bones.

Keep voting ANC.

Lesson in Irony: The social grant system administered by SA dept. of Social Development, and paid for by 6 million taxpayers is once again proud to be assisting 16 million unemployed and other people in need of help. Meanwhile SANparks administered SA Dept. of environmental affairs, asks us to : Please do not feed the animals. Their reason for the policy is because. They will increase in numbers, and be dependent on hand-outs and will not learn to take care of themselves.

This ends today’s lesson in irony.

Re Childcare grants. What if you had to show the baby to draw the grant ?

Will the shops be open in KZN? Will shelves be stocked? Will money help the people?

End of comments.

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