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UIF Delays July Applications For TERS

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The Unemployment Insurance Fund has seen many issues with their TERS fund that was created to provide relief as we go through this pandemic. Now, July applications for the scheme are seeing problems and causing delays. 

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The Unemployment Insurance Fund has not yet opened their TERS applications for July. This scheme will end on 15 August 2020. 

The scheme was extended for another six weeks as those benefitting were initially only supposed to be receiving funds until June. 

To announce this, Deputy Labour Minister Boitumelo Moloi said: “Following due diligence and consultation with the Unemployment Insurance Fund actuaries, and in line with the President’s decision to extend the life of the Disaster Management Act until 15th August, we have taken the decision to similarly extend the COVID-19 TERS benefit until 15th August 2020.”

DA Shadow Minister for Employment and Labour Dr Michael Cardo said that Labour Minister Nxesi "owes it to the anxious and desperate workers of South Africa, who aren’t sure when their next pay cheque will arrive" to indicate when the July applications will open.

May and June applications for the scheme opened late as well. June's applications also saw a fast closing date due to security and data breach issues. Those issues were only fixed on 11 July. Nxesi has been under fire many times since the beginning of TERS. 

“The provision of the COVID-19 TERS benefit also required strict financial controls and I am reassured, Honourable Chairperson and Honourable Members, that it was the UIF itself that detected recent attempted fraudulent activities and I am also encouraged by the speedy response of our law enforcement agencies in bringing the culprits to book,” said Moloi.

Questions that are then raised because of July applications being delayed is whether July applications will be considered separately from August applications or if the extended six-week period of 1 July until 15 August will be used as a single pay period with a single application process.

There has also been issues with payments. Many have not seen their May payments and it has become worse as time goes on. It was also found that those who did receive payment did not receive the full amount they were supposed to with only 64% of employees found to have been paid in full.

Cardo said, "This is deeply concerning and both the UIF and Minister Nxesi need to provide direction and communicate accordingly as a matter of urgency".

By 5 August, some R37 billion in benefits has been distributed through employers in more than 8 million payments to recipients and this was in line with a commitment to provide income support for three months but this was not enough. 

It was also announced earlier this month that UIF will continue processing new claims of the Covid-19 TERS for April and May until a new cut off date is announced.

UIF is in the process of appointing auditors to proble how companies spent the R18 billion paid out. 

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