News 31.7.2017 12:43 pm

Sassa must be accountable to an independent board – IFP

Bathabile Dlamini. Picture: Twitter

Bathabile Dlamini. Picture: Twitter

An opposition MP plans to submit a private members’ bill proposing amendments to the Sassa Act as a step towards the establishment of an independent board.

The IFP will soon be submitting a private members’ bill proposing an amendment to the Sassa Act for the establishment of a board as a means to protect the social grants dispenser from ministerial interference.

The Business Day quotes IFP MP Liezel van der Merwe as expressing a concern that the membership of such a board must be independent, a clause the new amendment is expected to highlight.

Van der Merwe is reported to have alluded that the board should be made up of professionals with diverse skills, such as academics, economists and members of civil society, and ensure that there are remuneration limits to curb the abuse of resources.

DA MP Bridget Masango concurred that the current Sassa Act gave Minister of Social Development Bathabile Dlamini too many powers, and would support legislative amendments aimed at securing the independence of Sassa.

The proposed bill is expected to take six to eight weeks to finalise, with Van der Merwe already having held meetings with parliamentary law advisers to discuss the matter in depth.

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