Parliament, Wednesday, 07 November 2018 – The Portfolio Committee on Social Development today acknowledged the progress made by the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) in implementing the Constitutional Court order to phase out Cash Paymaster Service (CPS) by the end of September 2018.
The committee is pleased with Sassa’s continuous provision of progress reports to the Constitutional Court, which will guard against future challenges. Sassa officials reported, amongst other things, that CPS services ended on 30 September 2018; that the decommissioning of the old Sassa cards should be completed by December 2018; and that the majority of social grant beneficiaries have been successfully migrated to the South African Post Office (Sapo) or banks of their choice. The remaining 523 420 beneficiaries still using the old Sassa cards will by using new ones before the end of December 2018.
The committee was briefed on Sassa staff’s one-day industrial action in October against the use of the biometric system and the measures put in place to address this. Sassa officials reported that the situation is under control and that trade union representatives form part of a task team looking at the system development issues that were at the centre of the discontent.
Once the task team has completed its work, Sassa will continue with the biometric enrolment of beneficiaries. This will ensure that all beneficiaries are registered on the system and fraudulent activities are addressed.
The committee noted the security challenges relating to post office burglaries and cash-in-transit heists. It encouraged Sassa to continue working with the South African Police Service and security agencies to address these challenges.
The committee also noted Sassa’s progress in addressing Sapo’s human resources issues, while ensuring that Sapo branches do not run out of cash, and reducing offline and data-related problems.
Committee Chairperson Ms Rosemary Capa said that a project of this magnitude does not come without challenges. However, the efforts made by Sassa to ensure that social grant beneficiaries are paid on time have not gone unnoticed.
ISSUED BY PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATION SERVICES ON BEHALF OF THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT, MS ROSEMARY CAPA
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