social security

SA to Provide Grants to the Unemployed

Government is planning to introduce social assistance to unemployed South Africans between the ages of 19 and 59 who do not receive support from government.

However, it is not clear yet whether this will be in the form of a grant, but Social Development Minister, Bathabile Dlamini, says government must ensure unemployed people in this age group were able to put food on the table every day.

Dlamini was quoted as saying that government has focused on social relief mainly for malnourished children, but the reality is South Africa has malnourished adults in South Africa too.

Child Grants Likely to Extend to 23 Years

Talks are under way in government to possibly extend child grants for needy children from 18 years of age to 23.

According to City Press newspaper, the proposal has been met with mixed reaction, with some roleplayers welcoming it and others questioning the timing of the move and saying that such a step will make people that much more dependent on government.

Lumka Oliphant, spokesperson for the minister of social development, Bathabile Dlamini, responded to enquiries by saying no policy decision had yet been taken, but Dlamini had begun talks about the issue.

Policies Lift Millions Out of Poverty

The World Bank says South Africa's fiscal policies lifted 3.6 million people out of poverty in 2010/11.

The South African Economic Update, found that South Africa's fiscal policies are cutting the rates of poverty and inequality, and that tax and social benefits are effectively redistributing income from rich to poor.

World Bank economist, Catriona Purfield, points out that, "We find that fiscal policy is very progressive in South Africa - it benefits the poor more than the rich."

16m South Africans on Social Grants

The Department of Social Development says just under 16 million South Africans are receiving some form of social security grant from government last year.
 
In response to a parliamentary question, Social Development Minister, Bathabile Dlamini, pointed out that this cost government more than R109 billion during 2013/14.
 
According to the department, the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) provides grants including old age, war veterans, disability, grant-in-aid, care dependency, foster care, and child support.
 

SA’s Child Support Grants ‘Most’ Generous

A new report by the World Bank has described South Africa's child support grant system as the most generous in the continent.
 
The ‘State of Social Safety Nets 2014’ states that South Africa spends about 3.4 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) on social safety nets.
 
The report, which defines social safety nets as regular and predictable transfers in cash or in-kind to poor and vulnerable people, also cites an example of Indonesia, which spends 2.6 percent of its gross national product (GNP) on fuel subsidies.
 

SASSA to Tackle Grant Fraudsters

The Department of Social Development says the names of bogus grant beneficiaries will be handed over to the fraud unit of the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA).

In a written reply to a parliamentary question, Social Development Minister, Bathabile Dlamini, said this will happen after the department has completed the overhauling of its social grant database.

Dlamini confirmed what Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan, assenting the National Budget 2014/15 that more than a million ‘invalid beneficiaries’ have been removed from the grant system.

Refugee Family’s Grant Card Rejected

A Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) family, who are refugees in South Africa, were left cash-strapped for months after their children’s social grant card was rejected several times at South African Social Security Agency (SASSA).

The father, who is concerned that someone was fraudulently collecting his family’s grants, says his five South African-born children aged between 10 months and 10 years were approved to receive the grants, but have not received anything for months.

Govt Fails to Provide for Citizens

A report states that the national budget has failed to provide adequately for vulnerable citizens as the economic crisis extends.

According to the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries, about 700 firms have shut down in the past 12 months, increasing the number of jobless people who are in need of state aid.

A parliamentary report on social welfare says the 2014 national budget has failed to provide adequately for items that are critical for assisting vulnerable citizens.

Court Asked to Nullify SASSA Tender

The Constitutional Court has been asked to set aside the awarding of a R10 billion social grants tender to Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) and order the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) to re-advertise the tender afresh.

In a unanimous judgment in November 2013, the Constitutional Court found the tender awarded to CPS to be invalid, on the grounds that it was procedurally unfair.

Govt Uncovers Grant Scam

Legal action is being considered against Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) over an alleged scam, declared Social Development Minister, Bathabile Dlamini.
 
Dlamini states that, "We are going to meet the lawyers and see what other possible means we can use to ensure that we move forward."
 
CPS was allegedly deducting money from grant beneficiaries illegally. The legal action included possibly terminating the multi-billion rand grants distribution contract.
 

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