Speaking to eNCA following the conclusion of Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini appearing before parliament’s watchdog committee, Scopa, portfolio chair Themba Godi said that Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan would need to explain Treasury’s position on social grants.
Godi said that the “elephant in the room” during Dlamini’s report session to parliament had been whether Treasury would allow her department and the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) to deviate from tender regulations in appointing the existing service provider, Cash Paymaster Solutions (CPS), for another two years.
Dlamini was not able to give assurances that Treasury would allow this to happen since Dlamini was instructed in 2014, by the Constitutional Court, to find a new service provider to pay grants, or to have it done directly by Sassa by April 2017.
Dlamini said that she has not broken any law as yet, since “deviations are allowed”.
Godi said he would be writing a letter to Gordhan to call him to parliament so that South Africa can know what Treasury’s position is on the matter.
Treasury said in a statement last week that it has not been involved in the negotiations with CPS to ensure that grants continue to be paid.
It is still unknown what the new amount CPS will be charging to dispense grants will be.
Dlamini has maintained that grants will definitely be paid to recipients on April 1, but doing so through CPS will not be possible if Treasury does not agree to a deviation. That might then mean that Sassa would have to resort to its “last resort” plan of loading cash on to trucks and sending the money out to towns and cities where beneficiaries live.