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Sassa to take action against government employees applying for R350 grants

Government employees’ names have been found on the R350 social grant application lists. Stock photo.
Government employees’ names have been found on the R350 social grant application lists. Stock photo.
Image: Leon Swart/123rf.com

The SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) has vowed to take action against government employees who applied for the R350 social relief of distress grant despite being employed.

The agency announced its verification process for applications for the special grant picked up that some applicants were employees in government.

Sassa said this was observed through the checking process of grant applicants against government databases to verify that those applying for the grant were not civil servants.

The grant is reserved for unemployed people and “for persons in dire material need who  are unable to meet their families’ most basic needs”. It will be paid monthly until the end of March 2022.

“The focus within the organisation is not only on the R350 grant but that we continue to address challenges with other social grants at the same time,” said Sassa.

The agency said public servants receiving foster child grants are entitled to do so as these are not means-tested and there are court orders to back applications.

“However, the other grants are being investigated to ensure the means test has been correctly applied. Sassa exercises zero tolerance to any deliberate attempt to access social grants by people who do not qualify for these,” it said.

Sassa warned that it is the responsibility of every citizen whose financial circumstances change, even while they are receiving the grant, to inform Sassa of the change immediately.

“This allows for their eligibility for continued receipt of the grant to be reviewed. Further action will be taken where it is found ineligible public servants have continued to receive these grants,” said Sassa.

The SA Post Office (Sapo) warned about scammers promising to keep people spots in queues to collect their R350 grant payments.

In a statement sent to TimesLIVE on Monday Sapo said it had “become aware of instances where self-appointed queue marshals ask customers who visit their branches a fee for a place in the front of the queue”.

Sapo said this is illegal, and charges may be brought against those responsible.

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