Department of Social Development Interrogated About SRD Grant
Ms Rosina Ntshetshana Komane, a member of the National Assembly, asked the Minister of Social Development a few questions about the Social Relief of Distress Grant.
Ms Komane asked the following questions, “What (a) the total number of persons who have been approved to receive the Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grant are yet to claim their money and (b) measures has her department put in place to ensure that all those entitled to the SRD grant are able to access it?”
The Department of Social Development stated that according to the reconciliation received from the South African Post Office (SAPO) 328 477 recipients have yet to collect their SRD grant from the first cycle which ended on 30 April 2021.
The reconciliation also revealed that 442 602 beneficiaries from the second cycle did not collect their grant from August 2021 to March 2022.
In line with the Directions published on 10 February 2022, SAPO has received approval to pay beneficiaries their grants from the first cycle, should they report to the post office.
Beneficiaries of the R350 Social Relief of Distress Grant may receive their payments directly into their personal bank accounts or from the post office.
According to the department, of the 10 563 123 approved beneficiaries, 58% withdraw their grants from their personal bank accounts while 42% collect their grants from the post office.
Additional channels through retailers were opened to improve access to the grants distributed by the post office. The retailers include Pick & Pay, Boxer, Checkers, Shoprite and Usave.
Negotiations are currently underway with the Spar group to allow access to the grant and further announcements will be made shortly.
SASSA is also finalising the contracting with banks, to allow for the payment to be made to mobile phones. This channel will be available for the extension of the SRD grant from April 2022 to March 2023.
These channels have contributed to reducing the queues at post offices and providing a range of options for approved recipients to access their grants easily.