Thousands of Gauteng’s most vulnerable residents, solely dependent on social grants, are going hungry due to delays in SASSA payments.
The elderly used their last money to travel to the SASSA pay points, and others took loans only to be told there was no money available. This is unacceptable because delays in paying social grants are putting a financial strain on the most vulnerable people in Gauteng.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) is in possession of court documents indicating that the debacle of SASSA payments was caused by the non-payment to Electronic Connect, the company that automates the payments. The company is owed R1.9 million for May and R1.7 million for June. From July onward, it also wanted to be paid 10 cents per payment authorisation, following the agreement between Postbank and Electronic Connect.
The Postbank approached the High Court on an urgent basis, acknowledging its debt to Electronic Connect. Currently, Postbank cannot pay Electronic Connect because of an investigation by the Treasury into irregularities around its procurement as a contractor.
The DA demands that the Gauteng Department of Social Development (DSD) urgently engage their national counterparts, the Department of Social Development and the Post Bank, to fix this mess and ensure that all SASSA beneficiaries receive their monies.
Furthermore, the DA will write to DSD to seek an urgent forensic investigation to establish why the procurement processes were flouted.