Unemployed
Unemployed. Image by Markus Winkler from Pixabay

The Democratic Alliance (DA) calls on the Minister of Social Development, Lindiwe Zulu, to once and for all sort out the chaos that persists at the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA).

“It is almost unbelievable that SASSA still has not managed to sort out the perpetual mess with the payment of the Special Covid-19 Social Relief of Distressed (SRD) grant of R350. They’ve had six months to work out the kinks,” said Bridget Masango, DA Shadow Minister of Social Development.

The DA said it has again been inundated with complaints from SRD recipients who have yet to receive payment for August. Many beneficiaries have been unemployed for three to five years, yet according to SASSA, they have all managed to find work amidst the economic crisis the country faces after the extended Covid-19 lockdown.

“As if leaving vulnerable people to face starvation is not bad enough, SASSA officials have the apparent audacity to be incredibly rude when people do manage to connect to a consultant after hours on the phone. SASSA’s online platform is another source of constant frustration to beneficiaries. It is in regular state of disrepair for days or weeks on end,” said Masango.

Since the start of the Covid-19 lockdown, the DA said it has communicated on the severe impact the problems at SASSA and the Department of Social Development have on SRD beneficiaries’ lives. And still, the Agency and the Department  pay nothing but lip service if we and the beneficiaries are lucky enough to even receive answers from SASSA and DSD.

Masango said the Zulu’s actions have proven that she is incapable of running DSD.

“She has proven that she does not care about poor and vulnerable people. She has proven that all she cares about is the power and status her position as Minister affords her. It’s time to replace her with a capable Minister.”

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