Over 10 million people applied for R350 grant since it was extended - Lindiwe Zulu

Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu
Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu
  • More than 10 million South Africans have applied for the special Covid-19 R350 grant since applications reopened.
  • In August, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the reintroduction of the grant.
  • It's expected to be available between August 2021 and March 2022.

More than 10 million South Africans applied for the Covid-19 social relief of grant of R350, less than two weeks after applications were reopened.

According to Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu, the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) had received 11 237 724 applications by 25 August 2021.

This was contained in Zulu's response to a parliamentary question by IFP MP Liezl van der Merwe, who wanted details on the applications.

The application channels were reopened on 6 August, shortly after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the reintroduction of the special Covid-19 social relief of distress (SRD) grant.

READ | Basic income grant: Social Development Department vows to continue 'fight' for it

The grant's extension will run from August 2021 until March 2022.

Zulu said the validations of these applications were still under way.

"However, as at 25 August 2021, a total of 1 914 538 applications have been approved. A total of 282 598 have been paid to 25 August. Payments will continue to be made until 31 August, by which time we expect to reach 6 million payments," she said.

Last month, News24 reported that more than 170 000 public service employees were illegally receiving R200 million in Sassa grants.

At the time, Zulu said 177 108 public service employees from national and provincial government departments had received a combined R200 787 648.

Public servants were entitled to receive a foster child grant, and may also get a care dependency grant, only for the same child.

By far, the lion's share of the R200 million went to KwaZulu-Natal government employees, who received more than R107 million.

The second-largest amount, R19.6 million, was taken by Northern Cape government employees, while Gauteng and Eastern Cape employees were in the top four after getting R18.1 million and R16.3 million, respectively.

In respect of the new application process, Zulu said the total number of grants approved on appeal, which are still outstanding from the first cycle of this grant, is 1 425.

"This refers to the numbers of grants to be paid, not the number of beneficiaries, as one beneficiary may have the grant approved for more than one month," she said.

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