The Postbank has announced that all South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) Gold Cards will continue to function normally for paying social grants beyond December 2023. This will come as welcome news for millions of grant beneficiaries who are no longer required to renew their Sassa gold cards.
Sassa distributes several permanent grants that encompass support for pensioners, people living with disabilities, war veterans, and for the care of children. Grants for the care of children include the Child Support Grant, Foster Care Grant, and Child Support Grant Top-Up.
Many of these grant beneficiaries access their grant payments using their Sassa Gold cards.
Earlier this year it was revealed that there are approximately 5.3 million cards due for replacement by 31 December 2023. Many of these Sassa gold cards have already expired. While beneficiaries could continue using these cards until the end of the year after Sassa extended the validity of Sassa gold cards, there was uncertainty about what would happen to expired gold cards in 2024.
The announcement from Postbank means that millions of people can continue using their Sassa gold cards even if it has expired.
This important development means that millions of social grant beneficiaries do not have to change their SASSA Gold Cards to the cards of the other banks.
It is believed that the extension of the Sassa Gold Cards' validity ensures continuity for Sassa beneficiaries, and they do not have to endure the inconvenience and expenses of changing their Sassa Gold Cards to other grant payment methods that are often costly.
Postbank called on Sassa grant beneficiaries to disregard misleading information that might direct them to change to other card products claiming that the Sassa Gold Cards are being replaced. This is because the Postbank is the only bank mandated to replace Sassa Gold Cards.
Grant beneficiaries are reminded that SASSA Gold Cards can be used to withdraw Sassa grants from a wide network of the country’s ATMs, of any bank as well as several retailers, such as Boxer, Pick n Pay, Usave, Spar, and Shoprite.
This diversity of channels reduces the need for beneficiaries to stand in long queues at Post Offices or cash pay points.
Sassa has also reminded grant beneficiaries that No Retailer or Shop has the right to force beneficiaries to make a purchase. This comes after concerns were raised that grant beneficiaries were being forced to make purchases before they could access their grant money.
Sassa beneficiaries are advised to report any retailer or shop that forces them to buy goods prior to paying out their SASSA grants. You are entitled to your full SASSA grant payment, and you have every right to use the money as you deem necessary.
Sassa Gold Cards offer various transaction benefits, such as free withdrawals in retail shops and free statements, empowering beneficiaries and saving on transaction costs.