Dlamini: CEO did not listen

2017-03-16 06:02

Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini has effectively thrown Sassa CEO Thokozani Magwaza under the bus, saying he did not follow her advice and that he was engaging with the Post Office without her knowledge.

In a confirmatory affidavit to the Constitutional Court, Dlamini said she wanted to record that there were a number of matters leading to the delay in resolving the grants crisis, which “concern specifically the approach and conduct of Mr Magwaza”.

She said that on February 7, Magwaza made an application to the National Treasury to deviate from the normal bidding process – seeking an extension of the current, invalid contract with Cash Paymaster Services.

She said that at the meeting of the Sassa executive on February 20, which she and Thokozani Magwaza attended, she made it clear that she expected him to act very urgently.

“I know he did not heed my advice in that he did not take any urgent steps to redress the situation shortly after the meeting.”

‘Parallel engagements’

She said that what he did do was on February 27, while on sick leave and “without my concurrence and contrary to the advice of Sassa’s then-legal team”, file an application with the ConCourt to extend the CPS contract.

That application was later withdrawn.

“I believe that Mr Magwaza has been having parallel engagements with the South African Post Office (SAPO) without my knowledge, or that of Sassa’s executive.”

The chair of CPS’ parent company Net1 said on Wednesday that if Sassa and Treasury do not agree to a new interim contract with CPS by Thursday, the social grants distributor may not be able to pay more than 17 million beneficiaries on April 1.

Speaking to Radio 702 on Tuesday evening, Serge Belamant told the station that the company needed at least 12 working days to ensure that it would be all systems go come April 1.

“If you work backwards from the 1st day of April, we need to ensure that the process starts 12 days prior to that in order for us to, number one, have the money so we can put it into beneficiaries’ bank accounts so they can withdraw it.”

The Constitutional Court will on Wednesday hear an application by Black Sash for the court to exercise oversight over the process to find a new social grants payment provider.


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