25 February 2019 - NW160
Carter, Ms D to ask the Minister of Social Development
Whether any persons have been held accountable and responsible for the SA Social Security Agency’s 2012 illegal and unconstitutional awarding of a contract to Cash Paymaster Services in respect of the outsourcing of the payment of social grants; if not, why not; if so, what are the further relevant details?
No person has been held accountable and responsible for the SASSA’s 2012 awarding of a contract to Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) in respect of the payment of social grants. This contract was subsequently found to be constitutionally invalid after the successful challenge of the award to CPS during January 2012. However the declaration of invalidity was suspended three (3) times, i.e first from the judgement of the Constitutional Court during November 2013, the second was during April 2017 when the contract was also extended and the third and last suspension of invalidity was during March 2018 to allow the phasing in of the South African Post Office (SAPO) as the entity to pay social grants.
SASSA’s focus was on attending to the court processes; complying with the orders of the Constitutional Court and facilitating the taking over of the payments of social grants by SAPO, and thus ensuring no interruption or minimal interruption of access to social grants by beneficiaries.
Since 2012 to date, there has been five accounting officers responsible for SASSA, with two on a permanent basis and the rest on acting positions. This not only caused instability at administrative leadership level, but made those in acting positions to prioritise the payment of social grants amongst other issues. Now that there is some degree of stability regarding the payment of social grants, SASSA is now in a position to attend to the outstanding residual issues. These include reviewing the award to CPS and determining if further investigation is necessary because prior to holding any person accountable and responsible for any conduct there must first be an investigation.
Approved by the Minister on