Sassa warns grant recipients of 'unscrupulous scammers'

Social Development Minister Susan Shabangu has urged grant beneficiaries to beware of scammers during the festive season.

"In this festive period Sassa (South African Social Security Agency) would like to urge all beneficiaries to be on the lookout for unscrupulous scammers attempting to cheat them through various dubious practices," the minister said.

She said Sassa advised beneficiaries not to give their Sassa cards or PIN numbers to anyone, including those claiming to be from the organisation or the South African Post Office (SAPO).

"Our officials will never ask you for your PIN," she said.

The minister also highlighted 2018 as a fruitful year "that has marked a milestone in the inter-relations of government departments".

"Sassa and SAPO have successfully paid all grant recipients and we would like to continue doing so without any challenges in 2019."

READ: The long wait for a foster care grant

In October, Sassa in Gauteng investigated a scam involving grocery voucher offers to unemployed South Africans.

The communication, bearing the logos of Sassa, Shoprite and Pick n Pay, offered South African citizens who had valid identity documents the opportunity to receive grocery vouchers valued at R2 200.

Unemployed citizens were directed to a website to register, using their ID numbers and proof of address. 

READ MORE: ConCourt ruling on Dlamini, Sassa debacle a victory - Black Sash, FUL

The North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria handed down an interim order in November that required Sassa to pay social grants into accounts chosen by grant beneficiaries.

This came after complaints that Sassa had implemented a programme to pay beneficiaries through the Post Office against the instructions of beneficiaries.

Sassa's previous fund distributor, Moneyline Financial Services, a subsidiary of Net1, and 14 grant beneficiaries lodged an urgent application against Sassa and minister Shabangu.

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