Question NW754 to the Minister of Social Development

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20 March 2019 - NW754

Profile picture: Sonti, Ms NP

Sonti, Ms NP to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether her department has conducted any studies in the Brazilian Bolsa Familia system; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what lessons have been learnt that could possibly be applied to the country’s social grant system?



The Department conducted an exploration study in 2012 on the feasibility of implementing a family grant instead of the existing social assistance system. The study reviewed existing family grants in both developed and developing nations and further evaluated the resulting costs, benefits, and operational implications. The study zoomed into the lessons of international experience that inform good practice that included the Brazilian Bolsa Familia Programme.

The study demonstrated that the design of a family grant as a replacement programme will pose significant constitutional, legislative and implementation complexities. The Constitution (section 27 in particular) is individual-based rather than household-based. Given the complex issues raised in the report and the cost of implementing an additional grant, a decision was taken not to consider the option.


Approved by the Minister on


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