Black Sash 'elated' for grant beneficiaries

Sassa head office. (News24)
Sassa head office. (News24)

Cape Town - Black Sash says it is elated that the Constitutional Court granted all its requests in its case against Sassa.

The NGO welcomed the news that there would be no disruptions to the grant payment system on April 1, following Friday's ruling, said spokesperson Esley Philander.

"Also significant is that the ConCourt asserted that the confidential data of social grant beneficiaries must be protected."

The court ordered the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) and Cash Paymaster Services to continue paying social grants until another entity could be found to do so. The invalidity of the previous contract between Sassa and CPS would be suspended for 12 months.

'Sassa must become fit for purpose'

Black Sash warned that the country should not be put into this invidious position ever again, and was happy the court acted decisively.

"We remain convinced that Sassa must fulfil its constitutional mandate to make grant payments nationally, without third parties with profit motives.

"The in-house payment system should create a special and protected Sassa bank account, free of deductions, including debit orders by third parties. Under the court's supervision, Sassa must now ensure that it becomes fit for purpose."

Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini had until March 31 to argue against being ordered to pay the costs of the Constitutional Court's proceedings.

'What did Zuma do?'

The Economic Freedom Fighters said the African National Congress government had pushed the country to accept an illegal contract with a white-owed, US company.

"This is a clear demonstration of non-commitment to radical transformation," a party statement on Twitter read.

It said the crisis was a direct result of President Jacob Zuma's leadership.

"If South Africa had a president, courts wouldn't supervise ministers who don't execute jobs in terms of the letter and spirit of law. When Bathabile Dlamini was not doing her job, despite all Parliament's effort to hold her accountable, what did Zuma do?"

Cope expressed its gratitude to all the litigants who "exercised their national duty". It was delighted at the prospects of the court holding Dlamini personally accountable for her "embarrassing ineptitude and callousness" in the management of her portfolio.

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