What Is Happening With Old SRD Grant Payments?


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Delays in grant payments can be a major setback for those who rely on it to afford the most basic goods and services. Since May 2022, 5-10% of the Social Relief of Distress grant beneficiaries have still not received their payments. Here is what is happening with these delayed payments.


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The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) provides financial assistance in the form of grants to vulnerable South Africans. However, they are behind on thousands of payments due to several factors.

Historic payments are made each month once the monthly pay period payments have been completed. So far, since May 2022, the average payment percentage reflects that 90-95% of clients are being paid each month. This leaves the remaining beneficiaries without financial assistance.

These historic payments are grant payments from the previous Social Relief of Distress Grant (SRD grant) cycle that could not be completed due to various reasons.

Why Could Certain Payments Not Be Completed?

There are several reasons why payments could not be completed for the specific payment month.

Payment details have changed and the new account is pending bank account verification

When clients submit new accounts, they are sent to the National Treasury daily, which then sends them to the relevant banks for verification.

Responses from banks typically come within three to five days, however, some banks may take longer due to internal verification controls.

Bank accounts that could not be verified are re-extracted every five days by Sassa and resent to the National Treasury for verification.

Referred cases

Referred cases are approved applications that could not be paid due to challenges with identity verification. For example, the applicant’s ID number has been used in fraudulent activities, like identity theft.

Clients whose cases have been referred will receive an SMS with a link that they must use to confirm their identity.

Payments returned by the bank due to challenges with the bank account (EF70)

The most common causes of this are that the bank account may have been closed, the account does not accept credits or the account is pending FICA.

When this occurs, affected clients are sent communication via SMS to resolve the issue with the bank to then re-upload the account or create a new account.

This occurs in approximately 0,15% of the total approved applications each month.

CashSend clients

At the moment, there are 350,000 Sassa SRD clients awaiting payment from CashSend services since August 2022.

Procurement processes are in the end phase to reactivate this payment channel.

Initially, there were over 500,000 applications awaiting payment through this method. However, due to the following interventions, this number has been reduced.

  • Clients responded to the SMS communication and uploaded their own bank accounts
  • Partnerships with a number of banks to assist while the procurement process is still being concluded. This process saw over 100,000 beneficiaries being paid each month (for the months from August 2022 until December 2022).
  • Additional payments were reportedly paid in February 2023 for January and February 2023, as well as those still remaining from August 2022.

Postbank clients

489,837 Sassa SRD clients are waiting for payment via this channel. The majority of these are clients who were not grant recipients prior to April 2022 and have now selected the Postbank payment method.

With the new payment method through retailers, which was introduced in April 2022, Postbank is unable to do FICA processes which is a banking requirement that Sassa is obliged to follow.

Sassa has to make sure that the identity of the account holder is confirmed. A new solution is currently in the final stages of development and is to be implemented as soon as possible.

Suggested Article:

Sassa grants being disbursed after payment delays

Millions of lower-income South Africans rely on financial assistance, in the form of social grants, from the South African Social Security Agency. However, recent challenges with the Postbank have left vulnerable individuals struggling to collect their payments in time.

 






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