1 May 2018

South Africa: Treasury Must Intervene in Sassa Disaster

press release

The DA notes with concern that the Minister of Social Development, Susan Shabangu, has suspended efforts by the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) to find a new service provider for the cash-payments portion of the social grants.

Grant recipients have been held hostage by the Department of Social Development for too long. The latest decision by the Minister follows a disastrous tenure by former Minister Bathabile Dlamini who single-handedly, on more than one occasion, forced the Constitutional Court to extend an invalid contract with Cash Paymaster Services (CPS). The depth of the maladministration and institutional corruption left by Bathabile Dlamini knows no bounds and it is evident that Minister Shabangu is out of her depth in dealing with the destruction and chaos in the Department.

The latest development will, in all likelihood, delay the appointment of a new fully operational cash-provider by the end of September 2018. This flows from the Minister stating in court papers that the tender process was technically flawed and had to be restarted.

It was further revealed that the terms of reference for the tender had been returned to SASSA's bid-specifications committee on three occasions to make amendments and to seek clarity. It is very suspicious and shocking that when it came to the actual tender there was a lack of clarity and inadequate information, specifically around the number of beneficiaries to receive services, making it impossible for bidders to enter a successful bid.

It is unthinkable that a Department that cannot even draft a proper tender document is responsible for ensuring that 17 million people receive their grants every month. It is clear that the Minister of Social Development, like her predecessor, has no respect for the highest court in the country, and that she and her Department are not capable of effectively managing the procurement process. We therefore reiterate our calls for Treasury to take over the payment function from SASSA, as the agency has become compromised under the toxic rule of the ANC.

The Constitutional Court has for far too long been a playground for Ministers who have no regard for the law or the vulnerable South Africans that depend on social grants.

The Minister continues to rely on self-made emergencies to keep the CPS contract in place, holding social grant beneficiaries to ransom. It is crucial that Treasury intervenes before another deadline is missed and the Constitutional Court is forced to yet again extend the invalid and dubious contract with CPS.

Bridget Masango MP

DA Shadow Minister of Social Development

South Africa

Ramaphosa Unveils $3.5 Billion Stimulus for Recession-Hit Economy

President Cyril Ramaphosa, who inherited a contracting economy from his scandal-ridden predecessor, today announced an… Read more »

See What Everyone is Watching

Copyright © 2018 Democratic Alliance. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 600 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.