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Social Relief of Distress grant payments are still underway for the current cycle of the grant. However, certain applicants are often rejected due to discrepancies in their banking information.
The South African African Social (Sassa) is still in the process of paying out the Sassa R350 grant. However, the process has not been without challenges for the agency and R350 grant beneficiaries and applicants.
During a discussion regarding the issue Sassa Project Manager for grants, Brenton Van Vrede revealed that many applicants have voiced their concerns with the possibility that family members who are unemployed may receive financial assistance from others to make ends meet.
As a result of this, they would no longer be eligible for the R350 grant because money had been sent into their bank account in order to provide for themselves. Van Vrede further stated that this results from the system’s structure and design.
That would be sort of an exclusion factor that even if you were getting support from your family, you would be excluded from the grant.
In addition to this, he clarifies that Sassa has no means of knowing if the family was the source of that money. Raising the threshold is something Sassa is hoping will help in this regard.
Since Sassa did not receive funding for the administrative costs associated with the R350 award, as they do with other Sassa grants, the agency says that they are unable to perform to the best of their abilities.
They needed 20 years to reach 12 million recipients with normal grants, but just a few months with the R350 grant and a lot had to be done in a short period of time.
The project manager for Sassa went on to say that the organisation plans to go above and beyond in the future to include more people who are more difficult to reach since their digital systems exclude them.
Sassa also reiterated that it lacks the means to handle specific circumstances on an individual basis, such as beneficiaries who have bank accounts that are being used by other family members to send and receive money. Due to money entering their bank account as a result, they will be disqualified from the grant.