Questions and Replies

Filter by year

07 October 2021 - NW1806

Profile picture: Arries, Ms LH

Arries, Ms LH to ask the Minister of Social Development

What (a) number of persons (i) were food insecure before COVID-19 and (ii) are currently food insecure in the Republic and (b) measures are in place to address the overall food insecurity in the Republic?

Reply:

a) The number of persons that (i) were food insecure (inadequate or severe inadequate access to food) before COVID-19 was about (20% of households) in the country (Stats SA, 2019) and

(ii) The number of people that are currently food insecure as in April/May 2021 was approximately 10-million people and 3-million were children (NIDS-CRAM, 2021).

According to the NIDS-CRAM Wave 5 estimates and StatsSA’s 2020 mid-year population estimates, approximately 2,8-million households (with 10,6-million residents) were affected by hunger in April/May 2021.

b) The measures in place to address the overall food insecurity include the provision of safety nets – such as food relief through nutrition support centres, food parcels and various types of social grants, including the recently re-introduced Social Relief of Distress Grant of R350 per person. Social Relief of Distress is also provided in the form of cash and vouchers on a temporary basis to support households in distress.

07 October 2021 - NW2264

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

What measures has her department put in place to prevent unsafe baby and child abandonment that has been reported to contribute to death, disability and illegal adoptions?

Reply:

With regards to child protection of children from exposure to possible death or disability;

Section 150 of the children’s Act 38/2005, makes provision for child in care and protection including a child who may be abandoned as a child in need of care and protection.

Section 151 of the Act also makes provision for the removal of such children to any alternative placement if the current environment is of danger to that particular child.

Alternatively, section 157(3) of the Children’s Act 38 of 2008 Act provides that a very young child who has been abandoned or orphaned, must be made available for adoption in a prescribed manner and within the prescribed period, except when this is not in the best interests of the child; only the Children’s Court can make such a determination.

The following are steps which can be taken by Social Workers

According to Regulation 56, if it appears that the child has been abandoned or orphaned, the designated social worker must:

  • Develop an advertisement to be published in at least one local newspaper circulating in the area where the child has been found calling upon any person to claim responsibility of the child.
  • A copy of the advertisement must be submitted to the Presiding Officer who must be satisfied that the child has been abandoned or orphaned.
  • A period of at least 3 months must lapse since the publication of the advertisement and that no person has claimed responsibility of the child.
  • Before the child can be made available for adoption, two affidavits are required:
  • By the social worker setting out the steps taken to trace the child’s biological parent/s, guardian/s or care-giver/s; and the effect that the child’s parent/s, guardian/s or care-giver/s cannot be traced, and
  • By any other person, if any, who can testify to the fact that the child has had no contact with his or her parent/s, guardian/s or care-givers for a period of at least 3 months.

Advertising of children for the purpose of adoption:

  • No person may publish or cause to be published in any form or by any means an advertisement dealing with the placement or adoption of a specific child.
  • The child has the right not to be advertised or paraded as being available for adoption through any means including print and electronic media, such as newspaper, magazines, radio, internet, face-book, etc.
  • Publication of advertisement for the purpose of recruiting prospective adoptive parents may be done by accredited adoption service providers on print and electronic media. However, such advertisement should not publish or photo list a specific child, but should give a profile of adoptable children available for adoption and express their need to be adopted and have permanent homes. Recruitment may also be done through promotional materials on adoption, presentations and community awareness campaigns at clinics, hospitals, churches, social clubs, and shopping malls and any other public facilities, etc.
  • Any illegal advertisement can expose children to the abduction, sale and trafficking in children, which is likely to be done as a systematic organised operation or crime syndicate.

• Any violation to this provision of the Act relating to advertising is regarded as an offence in term of Section 305 of the Act and severe penalties may be imposed by law.

  • As far as possible, the child should be placed in adoption as early as possible to enhance bonding with the adoptive family and reduce adjustment problems.

In a case of an abandoned child, the social worker must also:

  • Gather all the necessary information and affidavit/s from person/s who found or reported the child as abandoned.
  • Report the matter to the police, acquire a police case number and request the police assistance in investigating the child’s biological parent/s or guardian/s’ identity and whereabouts.
  • Follow up with the police if child’s parent/s were traced or not and request a copy of the police report if untraceable.
  • Place the child legally in a temporary safe care/ child and youth care centres pending further investigations and follow up on every lead and information if there was no person/s who made any contact with the child.
  • Children should not be kept in cycc for an indefinite time, the social workers must always have a permanency plan for them and there should be a progressive movement towards their final placement into permanent families.
  • According to the alternative care strategy, the social worker need to re-assess those children that have being in child and youth care centres for a long period, to determine if they can be adoptable.
  • Provide the child with the name and surname, ensure the age estimation of the child by the Children’s Court and thereafter, register the child’s birth with the Department of Home Affairs.
  • Ensure the medical examination and testing of the child is done and receive the child’s medical certificate/ report. The child’s medical report assist the prospective adoptive parent/s to make an informed decision about adopting the child or not.

In case of an orphaned child, the social worker must also:

  • Submit a death certificate/s of the child s parent/s, guardian/s or care-giver/s must also be submitted to the Presiding Officer.
  • If the death certificate cannot be obtained, an affidavit by a person/s, it can be the extended family member/s, community member/s or friends, who can testify to the death of the child s parent/s, guardian/s or care-giver/s, must be submitted. The full identifying details of the deceased, the date of birth/ identity numbers as well as the date of death are required on the affidavit.
  • The adoption of an orphaned child may only be considered if the child has no guardian/s or care-giver/s including extended family member/s that is willing to adopt the child.
  • Obtain a statement from the child’s guardian/s or care-giver/s or extended family member/s confirming that they will not be able to take care of the child or adopt him/ her.
  • Consent of the child’s guardian/s should be obtained and signed at the Children’s Court in front of the Presiding Officer.
  • If one of the child’s parents is still alive and available, his/ her consent should be obtained, if that parent agrees to the adoption of a child.
  •  If the other parent of the child is alive, but not available or the whereabouts are unknown, efforts to trace him/ her should be made by the social worker with the assistance of the police, before the child can be adoptable.
  • If the surviving parent of a child is a biological father who was not married to the mother of the child, he should be given preference to adopt his own child.
  • Ensure the medical examination and testing of the child is done and receive the child’s medical certificate/ report. The child’s medical report assist the prospective adoptive parent/s to make an informed decision about adopting the child or not.

Consent for giving up a child for adoption

The following steps should be taken when biological parent/s or guardian/s has consented to their adoption – this is similar to when a mother does not want to keep the child rather she intends to give up the child for adoption

  • An adoption of a child can only takes place after the required consent to the adoption has been obtained from the biological parent/s or guardian/s of the child, provided they are available.
  • The child must also sign legal consent him/ herself, provided the child is of 10 years of age, if less than 10 years, maturity and stage of development to understand the implications of signing consent for his/ her adoption should be considered.
  • The period of at least 60 days has lapse for withdrawal of the consent by the persons mentioned here and as alluded above.
  • Once the required consent is obtained without been withdrawn, then the child can be adoptable.

Children whose biological parent/s or guardian/s’ consent to the adoption is not necessary or required by Court

There are different circumstances where consent for the adoption of a child is not required and the Court may dispense with such consent due to the following:

  • Biological parent/s or guardian/s is incompetent to sign consent due to mental illness and this must be supported by a medical report from a qualified psychiatrist.
  • Children who have been abandoned and the whereabouts of their biological parent/s or guardian/s cannot be established or their identities are unknown.
  • Abused or deliberately neglected children.
  • The biological parent/s or guardian/s has consistently failed to fulfil their parental responsibilities towards their children during the last 12 months.
  • Guardianship in respect of the child has been terminated by the court; this could free a child for adoption when progress has not being made with efforts to reunite the child with their biological parent/s or guardian/s.
  • The biological parent/s or guardian/s has been divested by an order of court of their right to consent to the adoption of their children.
  • The biological parent/s or guardian/s has failed to respond to a notice of the proposed adoption within 30 days of serving the notice.
  • Orphaned children who have no guardian/s or caregiver/s who are willing to and able to adopt those children; and the court has been provided with certified copies of their parent/s or guardian/s’ death certificate or other documentation as required by court.
  • If biological father of the child is not married to the child’s mother, and was not married to her at the time of conception or at any time thereafter, and he has not acknowledged that he is the father of the child by:

(a) Giving a written acknowledgement that he is the biological father of the child either to the mother of the child or the clerk of the children’s court before the child reaches the age of 6 months;

(b) Voluntarily paying maintenance in respect of the child;

(c) Paying damages in terms of customary law; or

(d) By causing his particulars to be entered in the registration of birth of the child in terms of the Birth and Death Registration Act 51 of 1992 of DHA.

  • The child was conceived from an incestuous relationship between the biological father and the mother, or
  • The court following an allegation by the mother of the child, finds on the balance of probabilities that the child was conceived as a result of rape of the mother.
  • If the biological parent/s or guardian/s is unreasonably withholding consent for the adoption of the child.
  • In determining that consent is withheld unreasonably, the court must take into account all relevant factors, including the following:

(a) The nature of the relationship during the last 2 years between the child and the person withholding consent and any findings by court in this respect;

(b) The prospects of a sound relationship developing between the child and the person withholding consent in the immediate future.

07 October 2021 - NW1947

Profile picture: Motsepe, Ms CCS

Motsepe, Ms CCS to ask the Minister of Social Development

In view of recent reports that the Republic has about 95 000 orphans as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, what specific steps has her department taken with regard to taking care of the orphaned children?

Reply:

According to Children’s Act 38 of 2005, orphaned children are regarded as children in need of care and protection and therefore processes and steps as outlined in section 150 of the Act stating that such children must be placed in alternative care such as foster care and Child and Youth Care Centres (CYCCs) are being implemented. The Children’s Amendment Act affords potential parents the opportunity to adopt children who may be orphaned.

Orphans who are in the care of the family members benefit from Child Support Grant (CSG) as per provisions of the Social Assistance Act of 2004; and a top up grant that was introduced during COVID 19 to reduce the impact of the pandemic on families who these children are part of. The orphans who have relatives are also supported through the community-based prevention and early programme delivered in drop-in centres.

The department further employed over 1600 social workers during COVID 19 who amongst other services provided psychosocial support services to people in distress including orphaned children. The Gender Based Violence Command Centre was also operational 24 hours and accessible to all people including orphaned children. Through these initiatives the department was able to provide psycho social support services to more than 67 000 people including orphans.

The Department further implements Community-Based Prevention and Early Intervention (CBPEI) programme, which provides Core Package of Services (CPS) for vulnerable children. The aim of the community-based prevention and early intervention services to vulnerable children is to provide continuous support through an ecosystem and resilience-based approach. The Core Package of Services (CPS) are provided to all vulnerable children irrespective of the cause of the vulnerability during the pandemic to address different needs that they are presenting. The CPS was developed to operationalise community-based services for children, families and communities to reduce risks and build resilience in children.

The seven intervention domains of the CPS are:

• Food and Nutrition: Provide a safety net for children within their communities and where they can access food when the food provision in their family is insecure or where the child is at risk of stunting and malnutrition (cooked meals, food parcels).

• Psychosocial support: Improving children’s mental health by the early identification of children in emotional and psychological distress.

• Educational support: to increase access to and attendance of schools through for example, supporting children to overcome obstacles to attendance – such as lack of school uniform, lack of parental support for schooling and to support children in their educational performance.

• Economic Strengthening: aims at supporting and increasing the economic base of households through facilitating access to social security grants, entrepreneurial and other economic strengthening activities.

• Child care and protection: prevention of child abuse, neglect and exploitation and creating an enabling environment within the home, community and accessible services that will support parents to look after their children.

• Health promotion: Improve children’s health through better access to health care, promote and support access to sexual reproductive health services for girls and boys, and the early identification and support to children with disabilities, promote and support good WASH habits.

• HIV and AIDS services: Reducing children’s risk of contracting HIV by improved HIV awareness and sexuality education.

In addition to the implementation of the Core Package of Services (CPS) and in collaboration with the relevant stakeholders, an Emergency Response Plan was developed. The purpose of this Emergency Response Plan is to address the needs of vulnerable children who have been affected by the COVID 19 pandemic. The purpose of this Emergency Response Plan is to address the needs of vulnerable children who have been affected by the COVID 19 pandemic. Furthermore, the Children’s Act 38 of 2005 makes provision that all orphaned children, despite their circumstances around orphan-hood, they are accommodated in terms of section 150 which identifies them as children in need of care and protection.

23 September 2021 - NW2265

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

In light of the fact that her department has noted that there is a fine line between adoption and the sale of a child, what total number of cases (a) is her department aware of where South African children have been trafficked through adoptions and (b) were intercountry adoptions?

Reply:

a) The department is not aware of any South African children trafficked through adoption. Thus, there is no statistics of children trafficked through adoption. The department only have statistics of children legally adopted through intercountry adoption.

b) are three thousand three hundred and fifteen (3 315) intercountry adoptions recorded in the adoption register from 1 April 2004 – 31 March 2021. The following reflects the breakdown according to financial year:

Period

Intercountry Adoptions

1 April 2004 – 31 March 2005

239

1 April 2005 – 31 March 2006

248

1 April 2006 – 31 March 2007

256

1 April 2007 – 31 March 2008

231

1 April 2008 – 31 March 2009

218

1 April 2009 – 31 March 2010

234

1 April 2010 – 31 March 2011

200

1 April 2011 – 31 March 2012

194

1 April 2012 – 31 March 2013

177

1 April 2013 – 31 March 2014

212

1 April 2014 – 31 March 2015

250

1 April 2015 – 31 March 2016

187

1 April 2016 – 31 March 2017

149

Period

Intercountry Adoptions

1 April 2017 – 31 March 2018

153

1 April 2018 – 31 March 2019

151

1 April 2019 – 31 March 2020

156

1 April 2020 – 31 March 2021

60

TOTAL

3 315

23 September 2021 - NW1792

Profile picture: Hlengwa, Ms MD

Hlengwa, Ms MD to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether her Office has conducted a study on the same or similar topic that was covered by a study that was recently published by The Lancet (details furnished); if not, why not; if so, what are the full, relevant details; (2) what plans does her Office have to monitor the adverse consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in an increased number of orphanhood and caregiver deaths?

Reply:

1. The Department of Social Development has not conducted any study that is specific to orphan hood and therefore does not have the figures of children orphaned due to COVID-19. The causes of orphan-hood have not been tracked as yet, services are rendered to all children who are made vulnerable by different circumstances including those who are orphaned.

2. The department in collaboration with the relevant stakeholders in the children’s sector at the National Child Care and Protection Forum developed an Emergency Response Plan which is intended to ensure coordination and monitoring of services to children including the adverse consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in an increased number of orphanhood and caregiver deaths. The National Child Care and Protection Forum meets on quarterly basis and is a coordinated national structure to monitor implementation of services to children.

22 September 2021 - NW1785

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)With regard to comments made by the Member of the Executive Council for Social Development in Mpumalanga that there was a marked decrease in persons collecting grants when the Republic’s borders were closed during lockdown, what (a) total number of foreign nationals are currently receiving SA Social Security Agency (SASSA) grants and (b) is the breakdown of the different SASSA grant types in each province; (2) what (a) total number of government officials and (b) number of (i) social development officials, (ii) SASSA officials and (iii) other government officials are currently receiving a SASSA grant?

Reply:

(1) a. The total number of foreigners (refugees) receiving social grants as at July 2021 is 13 472.

(1) b. Table 1 shows the number of social grants by grant type per province.

Table 1: Number of social grants per province

Province

Care Dependency Grant

Child Support Grant

Disability Grant

Foster Child Grant

Grant-In-Aid

Old Age Grant

War Veterans Grant

Total

Eastern Cape

23,417

1,972,830

178,386

74,893

34,024

593,929

8

2,877,487

Free State

8,787

711,619

78,067

24,569

10,576

212,589

 

1,046,207

Gauteng

20,916

2,000,812

120,845

41,371

10,424

678,524

9

2,872,901

Kwazulu Natal

39,044

2,969,151

223,704

63,210

79,759

732,988

4

4,107,860

Limpopo

16,627

1,963,506

99,816

40,437

54,687

489,613

2

2,664,688

Mpumalanga

11,335

1,165,489

76,726

22,693

23,237

267,023

 

1,566,503

North West

9,803

903,493

64,815

26,691

17,228

277,606

1

1,299,637

Northern Cape

5,787

328,070

50,819

10,570

18,975

92,971

1

507,193

Western Cape

16,280

1,052,251

150,624

32,209

24,110

379,526

9

1,655,009

Total

151,996

13,067,221

1,043,802

336,643

273,020

3,724,769

34

18,597,485

(2) It is important to note that applicants for all social grants, except for the Foster Child Grant are means tested. In addition, SASSA checks all the applicants of social grants against the government payroll databases (Persal and Persol) in order to ensure that government employees do not unduly benefit from social grants. The fact that a government employee is benefitting from a social grant is not necessarily an indicator of fraud, as some of the lower level staff may still meet the means test thresholds.

Access to other databases that have been brought into the SASSA environment will also assist SASSA in further refining the validations processes, to ensure that the information provided by applicants on application is checked before the grant is approved. This will assist in reducing errors of inclusion.

(2) i. The total number of Social Development officials receiving social grants is 3400. Table 2 shows the breakdown by department and grant type.

Table 2: Number of DSD official receiving social grants per province

DEPARTMENT

Care Dependency Grant

Com

Child Support Grant

Disability Grant

Foster Child Grant

Old Age Grant

TOTAL

VOTE 04 - EC: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

18

2

103

4

91

 

218

VOTE 06 - GP: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

6

1

230

7

34

1

279

VOTE 07 - FS: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

7

 

91

2

31

1

132

VOTE 07 - WC: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

9

1

45

4

17

 

76

VOTE 11 - NC: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

3

 

41

1

13

 

58

VOTE 12 - LP: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

8

 

158

6

27

4

203

VOTE 12 - MP: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

5

 

42

1

31

 

79

VOTE 12 - NW: SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

6

 

59

2

30

 

97

VOTE 13 - KZN: SOCIAL DEVELOPMNT

51

2

1876

101

132

79

2241

VOTE 19 - NAT: SOCIAL DEVELOPMNT

2

 

12

1

2

 

17

TOTAL

115

6

2657

129

408

85

3400

(2) ii. Table 3 shows that 153 SASSA employees are receiving social grants as at July 2021.

Table 3: Number of SASSA officials receiving social grants per province

PROVINCE

CARE DEPENDENCY GRANT

COM.

CHILD SUPPORT

DISABILITY GRANT

FOSTER CHILD GRANT

TOTAL

EASTERN CAPE

5

 

5

 

33

43

FREE STATE

3

 

1

 

6

10

GAUTENG

3

 

2

 

5

10

HEAD OFFICE

 

 

5

 

1

6

KWAZULU-NATAL

10

 

2

1

11

24

LIMPOPO

6

 

4

 

3

13

MPUMALANGA

3

 

1

 

9

13

NORTH WEST

2

 

 

 

7

9

NORTHERN CAPE

3

4

1

 

4

12

WESTERN CAPE

2

 

3

1

7

13

TOTAL

37

4

24

2

86

153

All social grants received by SASSA employees, except for the foster child grant and the combination grants (which is a combination of foster child grants and care dependency grants, in which case both are not means tested) have been suspended with immediate effect in accordance with Regulation 29(1)(a) of the Social Assistance Act, which allows for suspension without prior notice, in cases of suspected fraud or misrepresentation.

Processes are now underway to determine the amount paid which should not have been paid, as well as the date from which these employees started being employed by SASSA, to determine the amount to be recovered. In addition, documents are being prepared for disciplinary processes to be implemented.

As a preventive measure, all Socpen data will be checked against the SASSA salary system on a monthly basis prior to the payment extraction.

(2) ii. Table 4 shows that as at July 2021, 177108 social grants were received by employees of national and provincial government departments.

NATIONAL/PROVINCIAL DEPARTMENT

Care Dependency Grant

Com

Child Support Grant

Disability Grant

Foster Child Grant

Old Age Grant

TOTAL

EASTERN CAPE

413

47

8570

435

2063

595

12123

FREE STATE

116

8

2916

114

529

144

3827

GAUTENG

537

15

20136

460

901

221

22270

KWAZULU/NATAL

1717

74

61384

3321

3414

8449

78359

LIMPOPO PROVINCE

267

10

8577

186

826

466

10332

MPUMALANGA

224

4

7744

302

617

512

9403

NATIONAL DEPARTMENTS

630

22

10113

372

1605

522

13264

NON GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS

 

 

14

1

2

 

17

NORTH WEST

416

25

17074

579

846

246

19186

NORTHERN CAPE

127

14

3474

217

313

228

4373

WESTERN CAPE

192

3

3079

111

473

96

3954

TOTAL

4639

222

143081

6098

11589

11479

177108

Table 4: Number of National and Provincial government employees receiving social grants per province

16 September 2021 - NW1991

Profile picture: Gondwe, Dr M

Gondwe, Dr M to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)With reference to the reply to question 697 on 23 March 2021, what is the (a) total number of Public Service employees who have applied for and received other SA Social Security Agency (SASSA) administered grants other than the Social Relief of Distress grant such as the child support grant, disability grant, and grant for older persons and (b) breakdown of the specified number according to each grant administered by SASSA; (2) what (a) is the total amount that SASSA has spent in paying Public Service employees who applied for and received SASSA administered grants and (b) steps has her department taken to ensure that the necessary disciplinary and/or legal steps are taken against the implicated public service employees?

Reply:

1. (a) and (b)

Table 1 shows that as at July 2021, 177 108 social grants were received by employees of national and provincial government departments. The Table also shows the breakdown by grant type.

NATIONAL/PROVINCIAL DEPARTMENT

Care Dependency Grant

Com

Child Support Grant

Disability Grant

Foster Child Grant

Old Age Grant

TOTAL

EASTERN CAPE

413

47

8570

435

2063

595

12123

FREE STATE

116

8

2916

114

529

144

3827

GAUTENG

537

15

20136

460

901

221

22270

KWAZULU/NATAL

1717

74

61384

3321

3414

8449

78359

LIMPOPO PROVINCE

267

10

8577

186

826

466

10332

MPUMALANGA

224

4

7744

302

617

512

9403

NATIONAL DEPARTMENTS

630

22

10113

372

1605

522

13264

NON GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS

 

 

14

1

2

 

17

NORTH WEST

416

25

17074

579

846

246

19186

NORTHERN CAPE

127

14

3474

217

313

228

4373

WESTERN CAPE

192

3

3079

111

473

96

3954

TOTAL

4639

222

143081

6098

11589

11479

177108

Table 1: Number of National and Provincial government employees receiving social grants per province

2. (a) The total amount that SASSA has spent in paying Public Service employees who applied for and received SASSA administered grants is

approximately R200, 7 million. Table 2 shows the amount paid during July 2021.

Table 2: Amount paid to public servants during July 2021 per province by grant type

REGION

CSG

DG

FCG

CDG

COM

OAG

Total

Eastern Cape

R8,037,695

R1,513,124

R3,719,837

R1,259,226

R232,733

R1,613,858

R16,376,473

Free State

R2,232,898

R342,625

R949,518

R323,190

R36,540

R349,913

R4,234,684

Gauteng

R13,158,586

R1,115,230

R1,753,063

R1,426,750

R76,020

R620,144

R18,149,793

KwaZulu Natal

R63,236,049

R9,706,180

R7,970,354

R5,564,046

R419,155

R20,866,448

R107,762,232

Limpopo

R9,902,243

R642,859

R1,638,430

R881,959

R54,540

R933,824

R14,053,855

Mpumalanga

R7,233,146

R882,309

R1,129,420

R722,528

R27,510

R1,249,995

R11,244,908

North West

R2,797,271

R646,044

R650,465

R435,553

R62,160

R553,705

R5,145,198

Northern Cape

R14,185,790

R1,504,404

R1,958,887

R1,310,375

R106,680

R534,644

R19,600,780

Western Cape

R2,081,331

R294,809

R960,180

R516,273

R29,610

R337,522

R4,219,725

Total

R122,865,009

R16,647,584

R20,730,154

R12,439,900

R1,044,948

R27,060,053

R200,787,648

2. (b) Steps taken against the implicated employees

It should be noted that all social grants are means tested, apart from the foster child grant. Public servants are entitled to receive the foster child grant. Where the foster child grant is paid in conjunction with a care dependency grant for the same child neither are means tested, and public servants would not be contravening any laws by receiving these grants.

For the remainder of the grant types, the means test would need to be applied. Since the information has been extracted, arrangements have been made to suspend the grants, apart from the foster child grants, for all public servants. Those who still qualify will have to come in and review the grant, and provide current information on their income, to determine whether they still qualify to receive these grants.

Measures will also be taken to recover any funds overpaid. Where it is found that the public servants were receiving a grant to which they were not entitled, the matter will be reported to their employing department, for disciplinary action to be taken.

10 September 2021 - NW1967

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)What (a) total amount has been allocated for food relief in (i) KwaZulu-Natal and (ii) Gauteng, (b) criteria will be used to allocate food relief and (c) measures will be put in place to eliminate double-dipping;(2) what number of food vouchers (a) have been distributed to date and (b) will be allocated; (3) what is the breakdown of the value of each food parcel in terms of (a) food items, (b) packaging, (c) transport and/or (d) any other relevant details?

Reply:

1 (a) The amount that has been allocated by the Department of Social Development for food relief as a result of the violent protests is R100 million, which was distributed as follows: in (i) KwaZulu-Natal = R60 million for 81 429 food parcels and (ii) R40 million for 57 143 food parcels in Gauteng.

In addition to this allocation, SASSA has an allocation for social relief of distress in both provinces, which is used for the issuing of vouchers for affected families – not specifically for the response to the unrest.

(b) The criteria which will be used to allocate food relief includes:

  • People experiencing hunger as a result of the public violence and looting.
  • Families with bread winners who have been laid off from industries that have closed down.
  • Families battling with hunger where there is no income (Living below the food poverty line of R585 per month).
  • Targeting 70% rural & 30% urban areas of KZN

(c) The measures that have been put in place to eliminate double-dipping include verification of qualifying beneficiaries against the different lists, such as the SASSA social relief of distress vouchers vs the identified beneficiaries by Social Development officials;

(2) a) SASSA issued 5 568 food vouchers in KwaZulu-Natal and 337 food vouchers in Gauteng region to respond to the unrest for the period between 1 April 2021 to end July 2021.

b) Vouchers to be allocated will depend on the assessment of applications received since provision of this benefit is needs based and dependent on available resources. SASSA will provide assistance in accordance with the provisions as set in the Social Assistance Act, 2004.

Food relief provision from the Solidarity Fund was purely using food parcels and no vouchers were part of this response. This was due to the fact that the food outlets in some of the affected areas were destroyed. The provision of food parcels therefore ensured that vulnerable citizens had access to food;

(3) The cost of each food parcel is R700. The breakdown in terms of (a) food items, (b) packaging is as follows:

Category

Food items

Unit

Qty

Starch

Fortified Maize meal

KG

10

 

Rice

KG

10

 

Potatoes

KG

7

Protein

Tinned fish -Pilchards in Tomato Sauce

400g TIN

6

 

Baked Beans in Sauce

410g TIN

6

 

Sugar Beans/Split Peas

KG

2

 

Milk Full Cream (Powder - not creamer) or liquid

KG

Litres

1

6

Vegetable

Butternut OR Cabbage (Any veg in season)

KG

10

3

Seasoning

Onions

KG

2

 

Cooking Oil

LIT

2

Other

Soap

Bar

2

(c) Transport and/or (d) food sourcing, packaging and distribution to households is fixed to not more than 5% of the food parcel value = R35 per food parcel.

08 September 2021 - NW1923

Profile picture: Kwankwa, Mr NL

Kwankwa, Mr NL to ask the Minister of Social Development

In light of many challenges experienced by COVID-19 Social Relief of Distress grant beneficiaries and applicants in the 2020-21 financial year, such as money only being collected at the Post Office even though grant recipients provided banking details, as well as technical problems at the Post Office that resulted in many persons, more especially those from rural areas sleeping outside the premises to ensure they get their money and beneficiaries having had to stand in long queues at the Post Office, including some beneficiaries who did not get all their payments, what measures has she put in place to ensure that (a) money is deposited straight into the beneficiaries’ bank accounts to curb long queues, (b) COVID-19 protocols are observed in the queues and (c) beneficiaries get their full payments?

Reply:

a) In order to address some of the challenges which were experienced in the previous cycle of the R350 SRD grant the process has changed, to enable all applicants to provide banking details on application and not only when the application is approved. Information provided as at 18 August 2021 is that, of the 8 931 375 applications received, 6 817 229 (76%) have provided information on bank accounts. This information still has to be verified to confirm which accounts can be used for the grant to be paid into.

SASSA is dependent on the provision of information on bank accounts which is provided by the applicants. In cases where there is no bank account details provided, SASSA is obliged to effect payment through the post office, as there is no other alternative.

However, engagements with the post office and Postbank have been held to introduce alternative access channels for funds deposited into the accounts held by Postbank on behalf of the post office. This will allow for funds to be collected at participating merchants and Standard Bank ATMs thus reducing the number of people who have to collect over the counter at post offices. While this solution is yet to be tested, it is believed that it will significantly reduce the number of citizens who have to report in person at post offices.

b) COVID protocols will be enforced at all post offices. The post office has confirmed that they will stagger payments according to last 3 digits of the ID number, to reduce the number of people who report to any one post office in a single day, and that they will employ active queue monitors to manage compliance to the protocols.

c) Where beneficiaries use their own bank accounts, there are bank charges which they have to cover themselves. However, when they are paid through the post office, they are able to access their full grant amount without bank charges.

A full reconciliation is done with Post Office to ensure that all funds due to any beneficiaries are paid out when the beneficiary tries to access his/her funds.

30 July 2021 - NW1107

Profile picture: Abrahams, Ms ALA

Abrahams, Ms ALA to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether, with regard to the campaign of the Deputy Minister in KwaZulu-Natal entitled Good Deeds which commenced on 1 March 2020 until 14 March 2020, she will furnish Ms A L A Abrahams with (a) an explanation on how the campaign is aligned to the priorities and plans together with the outcomes achieved by her department, (b) the programme of the two week campaign, (c) a list of (i) ministerial and (ii) parliamentary officials who accompanied the Deputy Minister on the campaign and the specific role each played and (d) total cost for the entire campaign of the Deputy Minister as well as all staff including additional subsistence and travel claims submitted at the end of the campaign; if not, why not, in each case; if so, what are the relevant details in each case?

Reply:

The “50 Good Deeds” campaign was implemented alongside the District Development Model in the Amajuba District Municipality, as the Deputy Minister is the District Champion for that district.

The “50” was linked to the Deputy Minister’s 50th birthday where she wanted to give back to the communities as part of her birthday celebrations over and above the DDM functions in the district. The correct dates are from the 1st to the 8th of March 2021. The Good Deeds campaign was from 1 March 2021 to 31 March 2021.

There were no additional costs that the campaign brought to the Department outside of everyday work. What the campaign managed to do is to draw private sector to support Social Development more and better. No Parliamentary officials joined the campaign. The Deputy Minister was accompanied by all the relevant officials in her department as this was a District Development Model outreach.

The Deputy Minister collaborated with different private companies for different programs in addition to the different work that the department was doing.

30 July 2021 - NW1108

Profile picture: Abrahams, Ms ALA

Abrahams, Ms ALA to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether, with regard to the campaign of the Deputy Minister in KwaZulu-Natal entitled Good Deeds which commenced on 1 March 2020 until 14 March 2020, her department paid for the (a) accommodation, (b) transportation and (c) subsistence and travel costs of the Deputy Minister and accompanying officials while they were staying at the Black Rock Garden Court from 11-12 March 2021; if not, who paid the bill; if so, what are the relevant details; (2) what was the total expenditure for the two days, including petty cash receipts

Reply:

The “50 Good Deeds” campaign was implemented alongside the District Development Model in the Amajuba District Municipality, as the Deputy Minister is the District Champion for that district.

The “50” was linked to the Deputy Minister’s 50th birthday where she wanted to give back to the communities as part of her birthday celebrations. The correct dates are from the 1st to the 8th of March 2021.

The Department covered all costs as this is part of the District Development Model. The Deputy Minister partnered with different private companies for different programs in addition to the different work that the department is doing.

30 July 2021 - NW551

Profile picture: Abrahams, Ms ALA

Abrahams, Ms ALA to ask the Minister of Social Development

(a) What is the name of the communication agency that her department appointed to supplement the SA Social Security Agency (SASSA) on communication challenges, (b) through what process was the company appointed, (c) what are the terms of the appointment contract and (d) what are the cost implications to (i) the department and (ii) SASSA in this regard?

Reply:

a) What is the name of the communication agency appointed?

  • Cut to Black Media is the awarded company for the Provision Of Communication and Marketing Services (Covid-19 And Related Communication And Marketing) For SASSA As Part Of The #KeepSouthAfricaHealthy Campaign.

b) Through what process was the company appointed?

SASSA took part in an existing contract of the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS).

c) What are the terms of the appointment contract?

Contract Duration: Start November 2020 end June 2021

Cut to Black Media was awarded the contract to assist SASSA’s communications. This was done through a submission process on the back bone of GCIS Bid number 06-20-COM-HO.

  • Date of Letter of Award: 22 October 2020
  • Purchase Order Received: 2nd December 2020.
  • Contract Period of Award: 06 months (Linked to GCIS contract)

The Contracts Terms of Reference are:

  1. Communicate COVID-19 grant campaign messages
  2. Build stakeholder engagement, public trust, and advocacy through strategic communications.
  3. Create awareness, understanding, and support of Social Development Portfolio work
  4. Communicate correct SASSA and social grants information
  5. Rebut fake news and wrong information
  6. Strengthen SASSA public relations using regional, local and district levels of communication

Scope of Work as per Terms of Reference (condensed):

  1. To participate in GCIS panel of service providers for communications
  2. Utilise key integrated marking communications aspects to broadly support communication & marketing services on the campaign.
  3. Customised multimedia products should be developed for the purposes of SASSA brand activation through the following channels:
  4. Public relations with focus on COVID-19 SRD Grant
  5. Media Strategy and Direction
  6. Promotions
  7. Brand management: consistency and alignment of messages
  8. Stakeholder Engagement: engagement and collaboration during COVID-19
  9. Creative and Production Services
  10. Video and Photographic Services
  11. Digital Marketing
  12. Monitoring and Evaluation

d) Cost implications

  1. There are no cost implications of this contract to the Department
  2. SASSA appointed Cut to Black Media at a total cost of R19 983 345,30 (including VAT).

28 July 2021 - NW1626

Profile picture: Nxumalo, Mr MN

Nxumalo, Mr MN to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether her department has any special plans for the homeless as winter has arrived in the Republic; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details; (2) whether her department has a budget in place to (a) allow for social distancing and quarantining of the homeless should the need arise and (b) extend the care given to the homeless to include the observation of COVID-19 protocols; if not, what is the position in each case; if so what are the relevant details in each case?

Reply:

1. Eastern Cape: Currently there are no shelters for the homeless that are operational. The beneficiaries that were accommodated during lockdown have since been reunified with their families.

2. Free State: The Department is engaging as a primary stakeholder with COGTA and relevant Departments on appropriate interventions for the homeless. The matter of homeless shelters is a standing item on the agenda of the provincial Corona Virus Command Centre.

3. Gauteng: The Department currently has 41 homeless shelters that are still open for those who need accommodation and other services. Furthermore, the Department provided funding for park homes for three (3) NPOs in 2020/21, financial year, 4th quarter, whereby homeless people were housed in tents for protection during the winter season.

4. KwaZulu-Natal: There are 7(seven) shelters for homeless shelters functional in 04 (four) districts as follows

  • Metro – 04
  • King Cetshwayo – 01
  • UThukela – 01
  • UMgungundlovu – 01

5. Limpopo: The Department has no shelters for the homeless at the present moment and only rely on the support from municipality as they have many facilities that are not utilised. During level 5 restriction, municipalities played an important role by providing accommodation for beneficiaries.

6. Mpumalanga: The Department does not have any plans for the homeless people. All shelters for homeless people were closed after the homeless were reintegrated with their families. Those that were not reintegrated opted to leave the shelter and go back to the streets.

7. North West: The Department is currently utilising 3 facilities in 3 Districts to provide services for persons who are homeless. These facilities are in Ngaka Modiri Molema, Dr Kenneth Kaunda and Bojanala Districts. The Department is in a process to establish one in Ngaka Modiri Molema district.

8. Northern Cape: There are no shelters for homeless persons in the province. Homeless people have been reunified with their families. The circumstances of those found in the street are assessed and intervention implemented according to the merit.

9. Western Cape: An additional 1000 bed spaces for the homeless in NGO run shelters will be funded by DSD over and above a baseline of 1 500 bed spaces already funded, all shelters also prepare for an overflow of homeless people during the winter times and have therefore already created extra sleeping spaces just for winter within the shelters. This excludes the extra 1000 bed spaces.

REPLY: (2) Nationally there is no budget allocated to provide shelter for homeless. The following depicts unique budgetary circumstances in provinces and compliance to COVID 19 protocols:

1. Eastern Cape: 2 The Department has no budget to set aside for homeless (a) to allow for social distancing and quarantining of the homeless nor (b) any budget to extend the care given to the homeless to include the observation of COVID-19 protocols.

2. Free State: (2) There is no budget allocated for homeless shelters. The shelters therefore remain an unfunded mandate and therefore (b) there is no budget for social distancing and quarantining of the homeless should the need arise and nor (b) any budget to extend the care given to the homeless to include the observation of COVID-19 protocols;

3. Gauteng: 2(a) There is no budget earmarked for social distancing and quarantining but homeless shelters are monitored regularly to ensure compliance to Covid-19 protocols and in the case of Covid-19 homeless people, provision is made within the available facilities for quarantine. (b) The department also funded some of the NPOs in need of PPEs at the end of the 2021/22 financial year to extend the care given to the homeless to which includes the observation of the Covid19 protocols.

4. KZN: 2(a) The current available homeless shelters are community halls and therefore cater for social distancing. Quarantine is however a challenge as there is no budet allocated for this mandate (b) DOH is part of the multi-disciplinary team that is rendering services in homeless shelters. Covid-19 protocols are observed.

5. Limpopo: 2(a) There is no budget allocated for shelters for homeless, however if a need arises, the Department will liaise with relevant stakeholders to ensure that beneficiaries are catered for as according to Disaster Management Act of 2002 and Covid-19 protocols are followed. (b) Should the Department opt to utilise the same facilities as in the first lockdown, compliance with Covid-19 won’t be a challenge as all facilities were allowing social distancing and have isolation rooms.

6. Mpumalanga: 2(a) & (b) There is no budget in place for the homeless people as there are no homeless shelters operating in the province.

7. North West: The Department have not been allocated funds specifically for services to homeless persons. (a) However the department with its pressures reprioritises within the existing allocations to make provision for social distancing, quarantine and compliance to all Covid-19 related needs; and (b) nor there is no budget to extend the care given to the homeless to include the observation of COVID-19 protocols.

8. Northern Cape: 2(a) & (b)There are no shelters that are operational and no budget has been allocated in this regard.

9. Western Cape: 2(a) & (b)The department has assisted the homeless shelters in the province with guidelines and protocols for Covid 19 safety and quarantine and isolation sites are available for all who need them, including the homeless.

28 July 2021 - NW1750

Profile picture: Arries, Ms LH

Arries, Ms LH to ask the Minister of Social Development

With reference to the announcement by the Post Office that it will close more than 150 post offices around the Republic, what contingency plans has she put in place to ensure that the payment of social grants will not be affected by the closure of the specified post offices?

Reply:

SASSA has engaged the CEO of the Post Office to determine the impact of these closures.

The confirmation was provided that the closures are being undertaken in terms of a strategy approved by the Post Office in 2016 as a way in which to reduce costs to the Post Office for outlets which are not commercially viable, will take place over time as the existing leases come to an end, and adequate consultation will take place prior to the closures. The commitment was also made that closures will only be considered where there is alternative infrastructure within a 5 kilometre radius for social grant beneficiaries to be able to access their social grants.

The total number of post office outlets closed between 2015 and 2021 is 120. Of these, only 16 were in rural areas, but all were branches where there was another post office outlet within the close vicinity. The remaining 104 branches were in urban and Metro areas where there is no shortage of alternative National Payment infrastructure which can be used by social grant beneficiaries.

In assessing the impact these closures will have on SASSA beneficiaries, it should be noted that only approximately 3% of all the social grant beneficiaries access their social grants through the post office. Social grant beneficiaries who receive their social grants through their SASSA/SAPO cards (a total of 7 612 640 out of 11 500 274 for June 2021) are able to access their funds through multiple channels, namely bank ATM’s, merchant point of sale devices, over the counter at post offices and at the remaining 1 621 cash pay points.


During May 2021, less than 500 000 social grant beneficiaries accessed their social grant over the counter at post offices.

Notwithstanding the above, SASSA will continue to engage with the South African Post Office to ensure that, where post office outlets are identified for permanent closure, there is alternative infrastructure available, which meets the norms and standards set for social grant payment, to minimise the negative impact on the beneficiaries.

28 July 2021 - NW1604

Profile picture: Abrahams, Ms ALA

Abrahams, Ms ALA to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)What (a) was the total cost of the administration fees paid by her department in each province to administer the Early Childhood Development Employment Stimulus Relief Fund (ECD-ESRF) to early childhood development centres since the establishment of the fund and (b) are the names of the civil society organisations that were used to distribute the funds in each province; (2) whether the administration fee was inclusive of the allocated R380 million paid for the ECD-ESRF; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW1810E

Reply:

(1)(a) There were no administration fees paid by the department in each province to administer the Early Childhood Development Employment Stimulus Relief Fund (ECD-ESRF) to early childhood development centres since the establishment of the fund. Provision was made in the framework that each province may use a maximum of 2% of their total allocation received under the unemployment risk support for administration which includes capacity to manage this initiative.

1(b)There were no civil society organisations that were used to distribute the funds in each province. However civil society organisations contracted through the support provided by DG Murray Trust assisted with the application and verification process. The list of civil society organisations as per province is attached.

2. Yes, the administration fee was part of the R380 million paid for the ECD-ESRF.

06 July 2021 - NW1751

Profile picture: Arries, Ms LH

Arries, Ms LH to ask the Minister of Social Development

What (a) total number of officials have been found to have colluded with nonprofit organisations to commit fraud in her department in the past five financial years, (b) action has been taken against the specified officials and (c) total amount was lost through this kind of fraud in the specified period?

Reply:

Nr

Province

(a) total number of officials have been found to have colluded with nonprofit organisations to commit fraud in her department in the past five financial years

(b) action has been taken against the specified officials and

(c) total amount was lost through this kind of fraud in the specified period?

1. 

Eastern Cape

During the past year financial years, investigations have been conducted on alleged fraud and mismanagement of funds by NPOs at the Districts. The findings are that, only project members found to have committed the alleged fraudulent activities.

Some of the cases have been reported to the SAPS, due to criminal elements in them.

Not applicable

2. 

Free State

There are no officials in the Free State Department of Social Development who have been found to have colluded with non-profit organisations to commit fraud in the past five years.

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

3. 

Gauteng

No officials have been found guilty to have colluded with Non-Profit Organisation to commit fraud. There are however cases that are currently being investigated in the Department as well forensic investigation reports which are under review.

Not Applicable, no officials have been found guilty to have colluded with Non-Profit Organisation to commit fraud

Not Applicable, no officials have been found guilty to have colluded with Non-Profit Organisation to commit fraud.

4. 

Kwa-Zulu Natal

One (1) official in the Department was found to have colluded with non-profit organisations to commit fraud in the past five (5) financial years. This happened in the financial year 2014/15

The official was charged with misconduct, found guilty and dismissed from the Public Service in March 2018

Total amount lost through this act was R438 380.00

5. 

Limpopo

Zero

Not Applicable

None

6. 

Mpumalanga

No officials were found to have colluded with NPO’s to commit fraud in the past 5 years

Subsequently no action has been taken.

Not applicable

7. 

Northern Cape

The Northern-Cape Department of Social Development has no current knowledge on any cases of possible collusion and subsequently have no information to report

None

None

8. 

North West

The North West Provincial Department of Social Development does not have any recordings on its database of fraud related cases, any officials who have been reported or found to have colluded with nonprofit organisations to commit fraud in the past five financial years.

The Department have established a dedicated Risk, Fraud and Ethics Management unit, which maintains the database of any reported or allegations levelled against any official on incidents of fraud, corruption, mismanagement of funds allocated to NPOs for purpose of investigations. Should there be sufficient grounds to consider disciplinary steps, referrals are to be made to Labour Relations unit or the law enforcement agencies to take appropriate actions.

The Risk, Fraud and Ethics Management unit implement quarterly education and awareness programmes to capacitate both the funded NPOs and officials, to deter any possible temptations that would be in contrary with the applicable legislations

None

 

None

9. 

Western Cape

Zero – Noneto Western Cape Department of Social Development

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

06 July 2021 - NW1536

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)By what date (a) will her department submit the report to Cabinet, which was funded by the European Union and commissioned by the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation relating to identifying and costing of core gender-based violence (GBV) services and (b) does her department intend to use the costing model to inform as to how they will fund GBV services, from shelters to post-rape care; (2) by what date does she envisage the new inter-sectoral policy on shelters will likely be finalised and made operational?

Reply:

1. (a) The Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation is the lead department in the research on identifying and costing of core gender-based violence (GBV) that was commissioned and funded by the European Union. The DSD is an important stakeholder in this process and support the outcome of the research. Once approval has been granted by all relevant forums, the implementation of the recommendations will resume. The planned activities are:

(i) First quarter (April – June 2021): the DG Social Development approved the report;

(ii) Second quarter (July – September): the report will be presented to the DG DPME and Social Cluster for endorsement and approval;

(iii) Third and Fourth quarter (October – December): report will be presented to Cabinet for approval.

(b) Yes, the department intends to use the costing model to inform as to how to fund GBV services, from shelters to aftercare services including post-rape care.

2. The new Intersectoral policy on sheltering services has been presented in the Departmental management structures. The plan is to finalise the policy approval by various stakeholders in the current financial year in order for its operation to resume in the financial year 2022/23.

25 June 2021 - NW1694

Profile picture: Masango, Ms B

Masango, Ms B to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)What is the total number of social workers who (a) graduated in 2020 and (b) have been absorbed by her department in each province in each case; (2) What (a) are the monthly costs to employ one social worker and (b) is their monthly salary in each province in each case; (3) What is the total number of vacancies for social workers in each province?

Reply:

(a) The total number of social workers who graduated in 2020 is 284.

(b)

No of Social Workers absorbed

2020-2021

Gauteng

86

KwaZulu-Natal

150

Northern Cape

53

Mpumalanga

128

Limpopo

180

North West

13

Free State

92

Western Cape

118

Eastern Cape

128

TOTAL

948

2. (a) The monthly salary of a Social Worker is R29 408, 42 at an entry level (inclusive of service benefits).

(b) The monthly salary is R29 408, 42 which is the same across provinces (inclusive of service benefits).

3. The number of vacancies for social workers:

Province

Vacancies

Gauteng

356

KwaZulu-Natal

155

Northern Cape

158

Mpumalanga

72

Limpopo

5

North West

178

Free State

117

Western Cape

313

Eastern Cape

136

25 June 2021 - NW1319

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)With reference to the presentation of the Auditor-General to the Portfolio Committee on Social Development, (a) what led to the increase in irregular expenditure in the National Development Agency (NDA) and (b) what are the reasons that investigations into irregular expenditure from previous financial years are still not finalised; (2) on what date will a formal policy or Standard Operating Procedure be in place for officials in the NDA regarding irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure; (3) what are the relevant details of (a) the person who is liable for the R983 billion that was lost by her department due to overpriced goods and services and (b) what number of preliminary investigations have been conducted in this regard; (4) (a) which service providers overpriced goods and (b) what remedial action was taken to recoup some of the R983 million that was lost in the 2018-19 financial year?

Reply:

1. (a) The main contributors to the increase in irregular expenditure in the 2019-20 financial year (R39m), were the irregular contracting of the training service providers to implement the UIF third party contract (R23,3m), as well as lease costs related to the NDA’s head office (R5,9m), where the contract had expired, and was not extended on time. The training contract was terminated, and replaced by new service providers after a competitive bidding process was followed. National Treasury approved a deviation to continue with the head office lease for a further period of 5 years, thus regularizing this contract.

Up to the end of the third quarter of the 2020-21 financial year, the main contributors to the increase in irregular expenditure of R1,9m, were the internet services contract, the insurance contract, and lease contracts for the Western Cape and Gauteng provincial offices. The internet services contract had expired, and was extended irregularly in the past. This irregular contract was replaced in the 4th quarter, thus terminating the previous contract. The insurance contract was advertised for tender in April 2021, and will be regularised in the 2021-22 financial year. The lease contracts for office space were terminated in July 2020, thus curtailing the irregular expenditure.

1. (b)

(i) . In previous years the NDA experienced a high turn-over of staff and some instability in the Chief Financial Officer position, which resulted in this work not receiving the necessary attention.

(ii) The other contributing factor in the slow pace of implementing consequence management was the lack of capacity particularly in both Legal and HR Units.

(iii) However, the assessment of all cases from prior years done in 2020/21 financial year has revealed that there is no need for a formal investigation because such transactions do not raise ay suspicion of fraud fraudulent, corrupt or other criminal conduct.

The prior years’ irregular expenditure cases emanate from contracts which were concluded by officials who are no longer NDA’s employees. The individuals concerned are therefore no longer subject to the NDA’s Disciplinary Code and Grievance Procedures (“Disciplinary”).

The amounts involved have been included in the condonation application, which is currently under consideration by National Treasury

(2) Formal policies for Irregular and Fruitless and Wasteful expenditure were drafted and approved by the Board for implementation in November 2020.

(3) (a) The Department has never incurred a liable of R983 billion. (b)Therefore, does not have any information with regards to an investigation.

(4) (a)Not applicable to the Department of Social Development. (b)Therefore, does not have any information of any remedial actions taken.

25 June 2021 - NW1460

Profile picture: Ngcobo, Mr S

Ngcobo, Mr S to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether her department has put any measures in place to monitor non-governmental organisations in the disability sector that are funded by the Government; if not, why not; if so, what are the details of the measures?

Reply:

Yes, all funded Non-Governmental Organizations, including those in the disability sector are monitored in line with the Public Finance Management Act as detailed below:

1. First and foremost, for the organization to be funded, it must provide the information requested by the relevant department to demonstrate that it has the necessary capability and understanding to provide services according to the specified minimum norms and standards for that particular service, in this case, disability services.

2. Secondly, before the funds are transferred to any organization (including those rendering disability services), the Department obtains a written assurance from the organization that confirms that the organization implements effective, efficient and transparent financial management and internal control systems. The purpose of this assurance is to ensure that throughout the funding period, the organization is monitored towards adherence to its internal control systems as these are reviewed and tested on an ongoing basis during the funding cycle.

3. Lastly, as part of monitoring the organizations; appropriate measures are maintained to ensure that subsidies to organizations are used for their intended purpose in line with the norms and standards of that particular service. Such measures include-

  • regular progress and annual reporting procedures on performance in line with the objectives and specifications i.e. for disability services – in this instance,
  • analysis of the submitted progress reports to monitor performance and achievement of quarterly targets. This is also aimed at determining the release of the next tranche,
  • internal and external audit requirements and, where appropriate, submission of audited statements; and
  • regular monitoring procedures; which include both scheduled and unscheduled on-site visits to review whether the agreed upon objectives are attained or not.

4. All-in all, the organizations are monitored against the service level agreements that they enter into with the relevant department in terms of compliance, performance, financial management and reporting requirements.

25 June 2021 - NW1538

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

(a) What total amount did each provincial department of social development return unspent to the National Treasury at the end of the 2020-21 financial year and (b) how has their underspending affected the budgets available to welfare programmes?

Reply:

Nr

Province

(a)Unspent Amount

(b) How has their underspending affected the budgets available to welfare programmes?

 

Eastern Cape

R262 293 000

The amount of effect in the Welfare programmes is that, a big quantum of the beneficiaries could not get the food relief meant to be funded by the funding referred to.

The employees in the ECD centres could not access the stimulus package meant by the conditional grant (Presidential stimulus package).

 

Free State

R 50 870 000

The Programme for Children and Families is the worst affected in that R48.432 million was not spent.

The under expenditure is mainly as a result of additional funding amounting to R38,880 million for Early Childhood Development (ECD) received late in the year (third quarter) during the adjustment budget process. The application and verification process for the stimulus package by National DSD was slow and it took longer than anticipated; as a result, the bulk of the funds were not spent. Furthermore, some ECD`s were partially paid and some not paid due to COVID-19 restrictions. A roll-over has been requested.

 

Gauteng

R438 000 000

Programme 2: Social Welfare Services

Food parcels at Anti-Retroviral Treatment (ART) clinics were not distributed as planned and the HIV Social and Behaviour change programme was not fully implemented by the end of the financial year.

Programme 3: Children & Families

Beneficiaries of Presidential ECD Employment Stimulus Relief Fund (ECD-ESRF) were not paid as the verification process took longer than anticipated. The underspending also affected the distribution of school uniform to identified learners because the production of school uniform was not finalized on time by the appointed cooperatives. In addition, the funding of ECD centres was affected by the changes of some of the municipalities by-laws.

Programme 4: Restorative Services

The underspending affected the implementation of substance abuse mobile services. Delays were caused by lockdown restriction and the Department contracted with NPOs from the third quarter after the easing of lockdown regulations.

Programme 5: Development & Research

The underspending in this programme was mainly recorded on dignity packs. Thus, the Department did not distribute the number of dignity packs planned by the end of the financial year.

Roll-over of unspent funds

The Department requested the roll-over of unspent funds from the 2020/21 to 2021/22 financial year on both equitable shares and conditional grant.

A total of R 158 586 013 was requested to be rolled over to fund the commitments as per the signed Service Level Agreement and Purchase Order created.

 

Kwazulu Natal

R97 627 000

If the rollover of R91,242 million is not approved, the Department will have no funds to pay for ECD practitioners, whose applications have been approved.

The underspending did not affect the budgets available to welfare programmes to be offered in 2021/2022 but the budget cuts of R223 million will result in limited services made available to the needy communities.

 

Limpopo

R 45 444 000

The ECD Employment Stimulus Relief Fund has its own allocation and has not affected budget for other Welfare programmes.

 

Mpumalanga

R 44 836 000

The underspending affected Early Childhood Development (ECD) programme in that not all batches of claims received from Non-Profit Organisations (NPOs) eligible and approved to benefit from the funding were not processed for payment. Roll over application request amounting to R30.495 million of the unspent funds of Presidential Employment Initiative has been made to the Provincial Treasury.

 

North West

R144 100 000

The budget available to welfare programme will be for sustenance of existing programs and projects. Expansion of services will be visible on COVID-19 relief initiatives e.g. Provision of food parcels to vulnerable households and care and services to the homeless. The rollover of R28million for stimulus package has been requested to fund ECD practitioners who applied before the end of the financial year in question

 

Northern Cape

R 53 059 000

Programme 1: R3.786 million

Programme 1 incurred a saving of R3.786 million. The Department will request a roll-over of R3.479 million for Buildings and Administration for the construction of office buildings in Daniëlskuil.

Programme 2: R3.786 million

The underspending did not have a negative effect on welfare programmes because the reason for the underspending was due to the following:

  • Resignation and death of community caregivers.
  • Two (2) NPOs rendering Social Behaviour Change programmes did not utilize all their allocated funds due to the Covid 19 pandemic, therefor the allocation of the second tranche was decreased.

 

Programme 3: R40 464 of which R39 300 million was for the Presidential Stimulus ECD Fund.

The unspent budgets did not negatively affect welfare programmes due to the following:

  • The Province was overfunded for the Presidential Stimulus Package. Any funds required in the 2021/22 financial year for the stimulus purpose will be requested as a roll over.
  • Lesser ECD centres were funded due to expired registration certificates.
  • Certain ECD centres did not submit applications for funding because they received funding from other sources
  • ECD Centres did not open and therefore submitted
  • Due to restrictions on movement during the Covid Pandemic, the process of returning children, who have been visiting friends and family, to CYCC’s, were delayed. This resulted in some of the centres not operating at full capacity for the entire financial year.

Since claims submitted are based on occupancy of the centres, the underspending of reflects this exceptional situation.

Programme 5: R5.331 million

Saving incurred due to the closure of Soup Kitchens based on Covid-19.

 

Western Cape

R5 067 000

The department was able to deliver on its services but was not able to expand their services to the extent which it planned to, due to fewer facilities than anticipated applying for funding, and because of non-compliant facilities.

25 June 2021 - NW1572

Profile picture: Gondwe, Dr M

Gondwe, Dr M to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether, with reference to her replies to questions 696 and 697 on 23 March 2021, she will furnish Dr M M Gondwe with a breakdown of the total number of implicated public service employees in each government department; if not, why not; if so, on what date; 2) by what date will the outstanding investigations be concluded; (3) whether the SA Social Security Agency (SASSA) will be soliciting any assistance from any other government agencies in an effort to expedite the finalisation and/or conclusion of the investigations; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, who will SASSA solicit assistance from?

Reply:

1. The following Table shows the breakdown of implicated public service employees in each government department

Name of Department

Number of employees

Agriculture And Rural Development

1

Agriculture Land Reform and Rural Development

4

Cooperative Governance And Traditional Affairs

2

Correctional Services

2

Culture Sport And Recreation

1

Economic Development Environment Conservation &Tourism

13

Education

75

Health

71

Justice And Constitutional Development

3

Offices Of The Premier

7

Police

1

Public Works

7

Public Works and Infrastructure

1

Roads And Public Works

1

SANDF

1

Social Development

5

South African National Biodiversity Institute

1

Statistics South Africa

1

Transport

45

 

2. The target date for the conclusion of the outstanding investigations is March 2022.

3. SASSA wrote to the Heads of the affected Departments on 1 April 2021. The 19 departments that have been listed in the response to question 1 have been approached to assist with the recovery of the monies that were paid and the disciplinary process.

SASSA has also elicited the assistance of the Department of Public Service and Administration.

The matter of government employees who benefitted from Covid 19 relief funds is also being investigated by the Fusion Centre.

25 June 2021 - NW1576

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

With reference to the State of the Nation Address on 11 February 2021 in which the President, Mr M C Ramaphosa, stated that the Government was going to forge ahead with efforts to provide greater opportunities for persons with disabilities to participate in the economy and in society in general, (a) what are the exact details of how the SA Social Security Agency (SASSA) envisages bringing about economic liberty for persons living with disabilities and (b) on what specific plans will SASSA embark to achieve the goal?

Reply:

a) SASSA currently links all children benefiting from social grants who are in matric to the Departments of Basic Education and Higher Education, so that they can be considered for NSFAS funding for further education. This is done in an effort to foster economic independence and break the inter-generational dependence on social grants.

With regard to citizens who receive disability grants, the ability to link them to opportunities is slightly more challenging. One of the qualifying criteria for a person to receive a disability grant is that the disability must be such that it prevents the person from being employed or able to support him/herself. The persons who receive permanent disability grants are effectively excluded from the open labour market. However, those who receive temporary disability grants, where the condition is likely to improve to the extent that it does not prevent the person from being employed, should be the target for opportunities.

In addition to SASSA interventions, DSD continues to support Persons with Disabilities in improving their socio-economic conditions with the following programmes:

  • Protective Workshops

This programme seeks to improve and enhance the quality of life for persons with disabilities through socio-economic development programme, in order to ensure their full and equal inclusion into mainstream society and economy. The key elements of this programme are psycho-social developmental services, inclusion of persons with disabilities as important role-players in mainstream socio-economic growth and development and promoting income generating programmes through business partnerships between government departments, the business sector and protective workshops, functioning under the auspices of the NGOs.

  • Residential Facilities

Residential facilities provide protection, support, stimulation, skills development and rehabilitation services for persons with disabilities who are unable to live independently, making provision for the ultimate re-integration back to the community, where possible. Most residential facilities have protective workshops empowering residents and persons with disabilities from surrounding communities through psycho-social programme, skills development and business skills. DSD will continue to support and subside these protective workshops, residential facilities and Independent Living facilities and Supported Living facilities through the country.

  • Disability Mainstreaming

This programme is implemented through a two-pronged approach:

  • The provincial departments implement disability mainstreaming services within the Welfare services to facilitate the mainstreaming of disability across all services.
  • Through a technical cooperation project implemented since 2012 in collaboration with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to develop approaches on the empowerment of persons with disabilities and disability mainstreaming (the DEM approach) towards the promotion of social participation of

Persons with Disabilities in South Africa.

  • The above-mentioned DEM project engages key departments, including local government and other stakeholders to identify and address disabling barriers, negative attitude and exclusion, as well as ensuring that persons with disabilities play central role in creating an inclusive society as change agents in order to improve their quality of life in line with the vision of the National Development Plan (NDP).
  • Capacity Building/Training Programme on Covid-19

Children with disabilities and their parents have faced difficulties in accessing significant information such as COVID-19 news, especially in rural areas. As a measure against COVID-19, DSD in collaboration with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) plans to conduct training for children with disabilities and their parents to deliver information effectively on COVID-19 in a train-the-trainer format.

b) The creation of opportunities for persons with disabilities is not a SASSA or Social Development sector responsibility alone, but requires a whole of government response.

Applicants for the R350 social relief grant who self-declared disabilities totalled 1 405 824. An initiative which has already been implemented is to try and link the applicants for the social relief grant who are aged between 18 and 35 with opportunities through cooperation with the Presidency. A project has been implemented in cooperation with both the public and private sector to list opportunities for employment and training for youth on the Youth.mobi website. SASSA sent approximately 6,5 million SMS notifications to the youth who had applied for the social relief grant (including those who self-reported disabilities) to advise them to register on the website.

The other initiative to provide opportunities for persons with disabilities is through direct employment. SASSA has a target to ensure that a minimum of 3% of the labour force comprises people with disabilities. We currently have achieved a total of 2.2%.

In addition to SASSA’s interventions, DSD has several plans including the following to enable persons with disabilities to achieve economic liberation:

  • Protective Workshops and Residential Facilities

DSD has developed a Delivery Model for Protective Workshops that recognizes a need to identify beneficiaries’ barriers impeding their development and growth. An experiential learning will be conducted in nine provinces focussing on the following components of this Model:

  • Psychosocial and Personal skills, including assessment, social services, self-care, life skills and assistive devices.
  • Workplace Skills Development focusing on technical skills, job coaching, vocational, ABET, financial management, business skills, entrepreneurship and simulations.
  • Supported Employment, including job placement, internships, job coaching, contract work, apprenticeship and learnership.

The key determinant factor for the successful implementation of the delivery model is collaboration with key and relevant stakeholders such as the Departments of Health, Trade and Industry, Small Business Development, Education, Labour, disabled people’s organizations and private sector partners.

DSD plans to identify residential facilities that have good practice protective workshops that have established partnerships with the private sector implementing economic empowerment programmes and contributing to the independent living of persons with disabilities in line with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons Disabilities.

  • Disability Mainstreaming

DSD is planning to roll out the DSD/ JICA’s Guidelines on Empowerment of Persons with disabilities and Disability Mainstreaming (DEM) that were implemented Limpopo, KZN, Eastern Cape, Free State in Northern Cape and Mpumalanga provinces in 2021-2022 financial year, as follows:-

  • Create a platform to roll out disability mainstreaming through supportive partnerships and cooperation among provincial governments, municipalities, relevant departments, NGOs, Disabled People Organizations (DPOs), national and international organizations.
  • Empowering persons with disabilities through leadership training and strengthening the capacity of disabled people organizations and mainstreaming through creating barrier free environments to ensure the active participation of persons with disabilities in society.
  • Establishing partnership with government departments that have shown interest in utilising the DEM guidelines to enhance the integration of disability considerations in government services.
  • Consultation with SALGA and COGTA to develop a programme to train municipalities on the Guidelines are at an advance stage.
  • Training in Covid-19

The planned DSD/ Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Covid-19 Training project for 9 provinces will focus on obtaining knowledge and skills on prevention, containment and management of COVID-19 and consists of the following two capacity development programmes:

  • Training of Trainers for social workers in DSD and NGOs.
  • Workshop for persons with disabilities and parents of children with disabilities.

Capacitated persons with disabilities and parents of children with disabilities will be able to share knowledge and skills obtained with their families, friends and communities, including participating in the rolling out of the training. They will subsequently be able to participate and benefit from mainstream economy, despite the adverse impact of this pandemic.

25 June 2021 - NW1577

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)(a) What is the total revenue that is currently generated by the National Development Agency (NDA) through strategic partnerships and (b) how will the NDA generate the projected R500 million to capacitate civil society organisations (CSOs) through public-private partnerships; (2) what total number of the 1500 CSOs have been linked to sustainable resource opportunities since 1 January 2017; (3) whether the NDA footprint increased through the Mikondzo service delivery approach; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details of how much the footprint has increased?

Reply:

1. (a) The NDA raised an amount of R399 485 000 since 2016/17 to date (Three hundred and ninety nine million four hundred and eighty five thousand rand) towards support to civil society organisations. The funds were raised through strategic partnerships such as DoSD (National and Provincial), SASSA, Unemployment Insurance Fund, CARA and National Lotteries Commission.

(b) The revenue generation will be anchored on partnerships with strategic private sector partners such as Business Unity South Africa (BUSA), the Solidarity Fund and the Jobs Fund in order to establish high yielding collaborative partnerships in the fight against poverty. Within government, the NDA will seek to establish partnerships within the three spheres of government with regards to co-ordination of community-based development efforts. The NDA will also employ cross referral strategies with other funding agencies such as the National Lotteries Commission, NYDA and SEDA whereby unsuccessful applicant CSOs can be referred to the NDA for further capacitation.

2. The NDA has created linkages and ensured access to markets for 978 co-operatives through SASSA which provide social relief to poor communities through the Social Relief of Distress (SRD) programme. This programme procures uniforms, including sanitary pads for children and they provide nutritious food for families identified to be in social distress.

3. The Mikondzo approach affirmed the critical role that NDA has to play in building the capacities of the NGOs working in the most deprived wards and municipalities. As a result, the NDA adopted a decentralized approach that would be achieved through establishing district offices to bring its services closer to the communities. Nine District offices were then established with 52 additional Development Officers hired to work in the Districts across the country. In the process over 25 550 CSOs were profiled and formed the database of the NDA.

25 June 2021 - NW1737

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether, in light of the loss of life due to COVID-19, her department has been able to identify children orphaned by the pandemic from 1 January 2021 up to the latest specified date for which information is available; if not, what is the Government strategy to address the gap; if so, (a) what is the total number of children identified, (b) what kind of support has her department rendered to such children and (c) how long after the identification have the children received Government support?

Reply:

(a) No. The Department renders services to orphand and vulnerable children irrespective of the cause of orphanhood.

(b) The department has developed a core package of services (CPS), which are central to the delivery of Community-Based Prevention and Early Intervention services (CBPEI). This core package of services is provided to all orphaned and vulnerable children a irrespective of the cause of the vulnerability to address different needs that they are presenting. The CPS was developed to operationalise community-based services by identifying and mobilizing the protective resources within children, families and communities to reduce risks and build resilient children.

(c) The department utilise the Prioritisation Framework of the CPS to identify the level of risk children find themselves in. This Framework provides guidance on the risk categorisation, expected actions and timeframes for service initiation based on escalating seriousness of the circumstances of the child. The Framework also ensures continuous support to children receiving CBPEI services form the time they are identified as being at risk and requiring services to the time they exit the system. Continuous assessment is done throughout the process of rendering services to establish their level of resilience.

25 June 2021 - NW499

Profile picture: Abrahams, Ms ALA

Abrahams, Ms ALA to ask the Minister of Social Development

What are the reasons that her department entered into a non-disclosure agreement with GovChat to support the implementation of the Early Childhood Development Employment Stimulus Relief Fund?

Reply:

The department signed an MOU with GovChat to support the implementation of the Early Childhood Development Employment Stimulus Relief Fund.

25 June 2021 - NW1090

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

With reference to her department’s presentation on its Third Quarter performance to the Portfolio Committee on Social Development on 17 March 2021, and specifically that it only spent approximately 29% of its budget allocation to provinces and municipalities to date, what amount does her department owe municipalities for services?

Reply:

The National Department of Social Development does not owe money to municipalities as the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure manages the account for services on behalf of government departments.

25 June 2021 - NW1091

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)What number of the 70 social service practitioners capacitated on psychosocial support are stationed in the Northern Cape; (2) what total number of active shelters for women are in the Northern Cape according to the policy on sheltering services?

Reply:

(1) Sixteen (16) Gender Based Violence Social Workers received training on psycho-social support.

The first training session was on Trauma Management and it was held on the 17-21 February 2020 and the second session was on Trauma Debriefing held on the 21-28 February 2020.

(2) The Northern Cape has six (6) functional Shelters in the Province.

NAME OF THE SHELTER DISTRICT AND TOWN

1. Ethembeni Centre, Pixley Ka Seme, De Aar

2. Colesberg Shelter, Pixley Ka Seme, Colesberg

3. Bopanang Centre, Z. M. Mgcawu, Upington

4. Prinsess Poffadder Safe House, Z. F. Mgcawu, Keimoes

5. Kimberley Shelter, Frances Baard, Kimberley

6. Bankhara Bodulong White Door, John Taolo Gaetsiwe, Kuruman

25 June 2021 - NW1318

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)With reference to the presentation of the Auditor-General to the Portfolio Committee on Social Development, (a) with what amount did the debtors balance increase due to the R350 Social Relief of Distress grant overpayments and (b) what number of ineligible beneficiaries received food parcels and vouchers due to poor policies and procedures; 2. (a) what are the reasons behind the slow progress in finalising cases under investigation in the SA Social Security Agency and (b) what is the impact of the slow progress of finalising cases on consequence management; (3) what are the reasons that not all contracts were listed in the procurement plan of the National Development Agency? NW1513E

Reply:

1(a) The total amount paid to beneficiaries who were not eligible for the Special COVID-19 SRD Grant is R11 175 950.

(b) All people who received food parcels from SASSA met the broad qualifying criteria as set in the Social Assistance Act, which, under Regulation 9(2) stipulates that a person may qualify for social relief of distress “if refusal of the application may cause undue hardship…”

While some of the citizens who received a food parcel may have also been in receipt of a social grant (largely one of the child grants), this is also permitted in terms of Regulation 16A which allows for the provision of social relief of distress to a child already benefitting from a social grant, “where the prevailing economic circumstances warrants the provision of social relief of distress.”

In addition, Regulation 9(5) to the Social Assistance Act provides for the provision of social relief of distress to citizens who are affected by a declared or undeclared disaster. The COVID pandemic has been the largest declared disaster faced by this country and the number of citizens requiring assistance increased significantly during this period.

The assistance provided by SASSA was provided in accordance with the requirements of the Social Assistance Act and Regulations. However, SASSA was not the only instance providing assistance in the form of food parcels.

(2) (a) what are the reasons behind the slow progress in finalising cases under investigation in the SA Social Security Agency

The total number of exceptions that were identified by the Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA) is 67670. Most of these exceptions were mainly as a result of SASSA not having access to the databases that the AGSA had. SASSA immediately stopped payments to all the cases flagged by the AGSA.

The number of exceptions identified by the AGSA are as follows:

Table: Exceptions identified by the AGSA and action taken by SASSA

Category

Number of exceptions

SASSA action

PERSAL/ PERSOL

15711

SASSA has SASSA has commenced the process of recovering money from public servants who received the Covid 19 SRD grant. In addition SASSA has referred the implicated public servants to the relevant departments for disciplinary action.

The Fusion Centre is working with the Department of Public Service and Administration to ensure that all implicated public servants are pursued.

UIF

15069

People who benefitted from the Covid SRD grant and UIF were referred to the Fusion Centre for further investigation.

UIF-TERS

2119

People who benefitted from the Covid SRD grant and UIF were referred to the Fusion Centre for further investigation.

Social Pension

15062

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose from timing differences in the validation databases that were used by SASSA and AGSA.

NSFAS

10358

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose from timing differences in the validation databases that were used by SASSA and AGSA.

Internships

6562

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose because SASSA did not have access to the internships databases.

Department of Agriculture vouchers

1281

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose because SASSA did not have access to the Department of Agriculture database on recipients of their vouchers.

Spaza support

372

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose because SASSA did not have access to the Spaza support database.

Inmates

332

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose from timing differences in the validation databases that were used by SASSA and AGSA.

GEPF

312

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose because SASSA did not have access to the GEPF database.

PLAS farmers

289

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose from timing differences in the validation databases that were used by SASSA and AGSA.

Artists

111

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose because SASSA did not have access to the Department of Arts database.

IDC Debt Relief

65

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose because SASSA did not have access to the IDC database.

Sport applicants

27

SASSA has stopped payments to these cases, which mainly arose because SASSA did not have access to the Department of Arts database.

TOTAL

67670

 

SASSA has referred the suspected fraudulent cases to the Fusion Centre (which consists of the Financial Intelligence Centre, Special Investigating Unit, State Security Agency, National Prosecuting Authority, South African Police Service) for further investigation. The Fusion Centre is still busy with the investigations.

(b) what is the impact of the slow progress of finalising cases on consequence management;

It should be noted that the Covid SRD grant applications were processed electronically by matching information from various databases and systems. There is thus no consequence management that needs to be pursued on officials. However SASSA has commenced the process of recovering money paid to the implicated government employees. SASSA has in addition referred the implicated government employees to their departments for disciplinary action.

(3) With reference to the 2020-21 procurement plan, 14 (fourteen) contracts of the 19 contracts planned as per the 5th (fifth) amendment of the procurement plan were awarded by financial year end. The two contracts referred to by the Auditor-General, as not being included on the 2020-21 procurement plan, were for the Western Cape Provincial office space, and the Mpumalanga - Hazyview District office space. These contracts were extended briefly during the 2020-21 financial year, to accommodate the removal of furniture and equipment, and were then terminated, in accordance with a decision taken by management, early in the financial year, to rationalise the costs for leased premises. These contracts were however listed in the 2019-20 procurement plan, a tender for office space was issued in that financial year, and adjudicated in April 2020. It was subsequently cancelled to align with management’s decision to terminate the lease contracts for Western Cape and Mpumalanga –Hazyview, and these contracts were therefore not included in the 2020-21 procurement plan.

22 June 2021 - NW1375

Profile picture: Arries, Ms LH

Arries, Ms LH to ask the Minister of Social Development

What steps has she taken to resolve the non-payment of grants due to early childhood development practitioners in the Republic?

Reply:

The budget process of Government requires that all requests for roll-over on unspent funds be submitted to the relevant Treasuries. All provincial Departments of Social Development have applied for roll overs with their respective Provincial Treasuries for consideration. The Department has been engaging regularly with National Treasury to try and expedite this matter and make regular follow-ups, noting that all relevant process ought to be followed accordingly. Only once the roll overs requests are approved, the qualifying employees will receive their payment.

22 June 2021 - NW1440

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)What are the reasons for the 11, 44% cut in the budget of the SA Social Security Agency (SASSA), which is the most crucial department for the poor and vulnerable; (2) How does SASSA intend to (a) alleviate the pressure on the budget in the 2021-22 financial year, (b) sustain the R1 billion budget cut in this Medium-Term Expenditure Framework and (c) ensure no person lives below the extreme poverty line in the nine years to 2030, taking into account the drastic budget cuts?

Reply:

(1) The budget cuts to SASSA are as a result of the announcements made by the Minister of Finance in his 2021 Budget Speech, wherein he announced reductions in allocations across government departments, including the Department of Social Development.

(2) (a) In order to stay within the budget allocation, SASSA has no option but to implement below-inflation increases to the social grant amounts, while also implementing measures to achieve efficiencies in its operations and manage the wage bill. The Agency will consider initiatives to do more with less, such as encouraging grant beneficiaries to choose the most economical channel when withdrawing their grants to lower the cost of disbursing the grants, and review existing contracts and operations to identify areas where savings can be achieved.

(b) In due consideration of the Agency’s budget situation and to deal with budget pressures the following will be given attention:

    1. Finalise the Business Process Re-engineering project to enhance future personnel and capacity planning.
    2. Reduce travel expenditure and encouraging the use of technology.
    3. Review of the existing contracts to assess their need in the current form.
    4. Improvement and strengthening of the controls in the management of assets e.g. fleet, telephones, etc.
    5. Implement cost containment measures on non-critical areas.
    6. Review prioritisation of projects/ activities to fund other key projects.

(c) SASSA will continue paying social grants to those who meet the qualifying criteria as set in the Social Assistance Act. Given the ever-shrinking financial allocation, SASSA will ensure that only qualifying persons receive the grants – this means that regular reviews of those already in the system will be strengthened; the application process must will be strengthened with external validations to confirm the means of those applying, and communication of the qualifying criteria will also be strengthened.

However, it should be noted that these measures will be undertaken without compromising the provision of social grants to qualifying persons, which is a constitutional right.

22 June 2021 - NW1767

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

In view of the commemoration of World Hunger Day on 28 May 2021, and whilst we appreciate the efforts by her department to end child hunger through initiatives such as the Child Support Grant that reaches more than 13 million children in the Republic, hunger remains a huge challenge affecting millions of children in the Republic, what more is her department planning to do to address the scourge of hunger still facing millions in the Republic?

Reply:

The Department working with other stakeholders is strengthening the implementation of the National Food and Nutrition Security Plan 2018-2023 developed as a response to the challenge of food insecurity and malnutrition in South Africa. This is implemented with diverse stakeholders including government departments; nongovernmental organisations; academic institutions and development partners working in unison to fight against hunger and the underlying causes.

DSD will continue to implement Strategic Objective 3 of the plan, which is about expanding targeted social protection measures and sustainable livelihood programmes to assist the poor and vulnerable.

This work is implemented by the National Interdepartmental Coordination Committee, led by the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME) and DSD will play its part and mobilise provinces to also intensify their contribution on the same.

 

 

22 June 2021 - NW1305

Profile picture: Masango, Ms B

Masango, Ms B to ask the Minister of Social Development

(a) What is the vacancy rate for all types of positions at the SA Social Security Agency, (b) what is the breakdown of the numbers in each province, (c) what are the reasons for the vacancies and (d) for how long have the positions been vacant?

Reply:

a) The current vacancy rate for all types of positions at the SA Social Security Agency is 1.7% for vacant and funded posts.

b) Breakdown of the numbers in each province are depicted in the table below:

Region/Office

Overall Number of vacancies

EASTERN CAPE

16

FREE STATE

13

GAUTENG

7

HEAD OFFICE

16

KWAZULU-NATAL

23

LIMPOPO

14

MPUMALANGA

8

NORTH WEST

19

NORTHERN CAPE

5

WESTERN CAPE

13

Grand Total

134

Number of vacancies per salary level:

Salary level

Numbers

Salary level 5

32

Salary level 7

27

Salary level 8

18

Salary level 9

3

Salary level 10

3

Salary level 11

18

Salary level 12

8

Salary level 13

19

Salary level 14

5

Salary level 15

1

Total

134

(c) Employees leave the organisation due to a number of reasons such as death, resignations, dismissal, retirement and ill-health.

(d) These 134 posts have been vacant for an average period of 12 months.

22 June 2021 - NW1386

Profile picture: Matiase, Mr NS

Matiase, Mr NS to ask the Minister of Social Development

What (a) total number of persons are beneficiaries of the State’s social welfare grants and (b) are the relevant details of the (i) age, (ii) gender and (iii) race of each specified person?

Reply:

(a). Table 1 shows the number of persons who are benefitting from the State’s social grants as at 30 April 2021. The total number is 18 478 567.

Table 1: Number of social grants by grant type as at 30 April 2021

Region

Care Dependency Grant (CDG)

Child Support Grant (CSG)

Disability Grant (DG)

Foster Care Grant (FCG)

Grant-In-Aid (GIA)

Old Age Grant (OAG)

War Veteran’s Grant (WVG)

Grand Total

Eastern Cape

23 042

1 957 054

177 510

72 585

32 823

593 015

8

2 856 037

Free State

8 753

711 420

75 633

22 956

10 267

213 604

 

1 042 633

Gauteng

20 504

1 989 063

116 726

38 939

10 077

681 084

10

2 856 403

Kwazulu Natal

38 514

2 952 283

217 560

58 033

78 987

731 196

4

4 076 577

Limpopo

16 383

1 949 424

98 024

37 984

54 366

489 863

2

2 646 046

Mpumalanga

11 334

1 159 496

75 679

21 061

23 275

267 300

 

1 558 145

North West

9 752

899 905

63 829

25 242

17 047

279 105

1

1 294 881

Northern Cape

5 755

326 678

49 724

10 175

18 516

93 480

1

504 329

Western Cape

16 121

1 054 197

139 560

31 186

23 951

378 511

10

1 643 536

Total

150 158

12 999 520

1 014 245

318 161

269 309

3 727 158

36

18 478 587

(b). (i) Table 2a shows the age breakdown of people receiving child grants.

Table 2a: Age breakdown of persons receiving adult grants

(b). (i) Table 2b shows the age breakdown of people receiving child grants.

Table 2b: Age breakdown of persons receiving child grants

Child Age

Grant Type

Grand Total

 

Care Dependency Grant

Child Support Grant

Foster Care Grant

 

0

444

546 717

141

547 302

1

1 715

744 641

650

747 003

2

2 848

750 091

1 338

754 266

3

3 831

728 832

2 116

734 757

4

4 508

710 442

2 812

717 728

5

5 763

724 330

4 174

734 209

6

7 039

785 798

5 587

798 349

7

7 803

782 103

7 171

796 969

8

8 520

779 319

9 308

797 018

9

9 216

779 117

11 501

799 676

10

10 047

759 839

14 503

784 192

11

10 777

748 303

17 917

776 740

12

11 923

772 218

22 562

806 373

13

12 843

745 274

27 078

784 752

14

13 320

731 030

32 099

775 889

15

13 683

703 467

36 422

752 984

16

14 138

673 022

40 864

727 332

17

11 735

534 977

40 758

586 832

18+

 

 

22 465

22 465

Grand Total

150 153

12 999 520

299 466

13 444 836

(b). (ii) Table 3 shows the number of social grants by gender.

Table 3: Number of social grants by gender as at 30 April 2021

b. (iii) race of each specified person?

SASSA does not collect information on the race of grant beneficiaries. Thus the information on the racial breakdown of grant beneficiaries is not available.

22 June 2021 - NW1695

Profile picture: Masango, Ms B

Masango, Ms B to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether her department has funded bursaries for social workers in the (a) 2020 and (b) 2021 academic years; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details; (2) What number of bursaries have been allocated for the (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021 academic years; (3) Whether a lesser number of bursaries were awarded in the specified academic years; if so, what are the reasons for the decline in the number of bursaries awarded?

Reply:

1. (a) Yes, the department has funded social worker students through the scholarship programme in the 2020 academic year.

(b)Yes, the department is funding social work students through the scholarship programme in the 2021 academic year.

2. (a) Nine hundred and twenty five (925) social work students were funded through the scholarship programme in 2019.

(b) Three hundred and eighty nine (389) social work students were funded through the scholarship programme in 2020.

(c) One hundred and fifty six (156) social work students are funded through the scholarship programme in 2021.

3. The lesser number of students have been awarded scholarships since 2019/20 because of the reduction of funds. During the 2017-2019 MTEF period, the allocation for social worker scholarships was reduced to fund the conditional grant for employment of social work graduates. This grant was implemented over a period of three years (2017 – 2019), therefore the department suspended recruitment of new students in the scholarship programme. All students funded in 2019/2020, 2020/21 and 2021/22 are those who were previously funded and were in the process of completing their studies.

22 June 2021 - NW1573

Profile picture: Gondwe, Dr M

Gondwe, Dr M to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether, with reference to her replies to questions 696 and 697 on 23 March 2021, the SA Social Security Agency (SASSA) is planning to introduce measures other than the access to PERSAL and PE RSOL databases to prevent public service employees from unlawfully and fraudulently applying for and receiving social grants; (2) (a) how and (b) by what date will SASSA ensure that its systems are integrated with other government departments in an effort to prevent public service employees from applying for any SASSA administered grants?

Reply:

1. SASSA has included in its operational plan for 2021/2022 financial year a target to interface with Labour (UIF), Government Pensions Administration Agency (Government Employees Pension Fund), National Student Financial Aid Scheme and Correctional Services established to verify income means. In addition, SASSA has commenced discussions with the Department of Cooperative Governance regarding access to data of municipal employees.

2 (a) SASSA first has to conclude Memoranda of Agreement (MOA) with the targeted agencies followed by a formal process to confirm interface guidelines that will give input to the revised business processes and system implementation.

2(b) The process to formalise the MOA and interface guidelines with Department of Labour (UIF) and GPAA (GEPF) has started and planned to be finalised by the end of June 2021 followed by the same process with NSFAS and Department of Correctional Services by the end of September 2021.

The Memorandum of Agreement with the Department of Cooperative Governance was concluded in May 2021.

By the end of the March 2022 SASSA will utilise the reports generated from the data sharing process to initiate a review process for existing beneficiaries.

22 June 2021 - NW1541

Profile picture: Arries, Ms LH

Arries, Ms LH to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether her department considers marital status when processing grant applications; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what is the impact of the various marriage regimes in processing grant applications?

Reply:

SASSA does consider the marital status when assessing applications for any social grant. Proof of spousal relationship is required when applying for any social grant. In terms of Regulation 18(2) to the Social Assistance Act, the income of an applicant and his/her spouse must be taken into account irrespective of whether the couple is married in or out of community of property under the Marriage Act, or any provisions contained in an ante-nuptial contract.

Spouse is defined for the purposes of social grant applications as “a person who is the spouse or partner of a person in accordance with the Marriage Act, 1961 (Act no 25 of 1961), the Recognition of Customary Marriages Act, 1998 (Act No 120 of 1998) or the Civil Union Act, 2006 (Act no 17 of 2006 or the tenets of any Asiatic religion…” This therefore covers all the marriage regimes applicable in South Africa.

22 June 2021 - NW1537

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Given that the Financial Sector Policy states that her department will pay interest at SA Revenue Service rates on all delayed transfers to nongovernmental organisations (NGOs), what total amount (a) in interest has her department paid to date and (b) have they budgeted towards this; (2) what steps (a) has her department taken to consult with NGOs around the Financial Sector Policy and (b) are being taken by her department to implement the specified policy?

Reply:

1. The clause on payment of interest on the DSD Sector Funding Policy was considered as a result of initial engagements with the National Treasury and their Draft Guidelines on Management of Transfers that was developed in 2017. There has been further engagements with the National Treasury to review the clause and assess its practicality. Through the guidance received from National Treasury, it will not be feasible to implement the said clause and as such this will be reviewed by the Department.

(a) To date no interest has been paid to NPOs and;

(b) No budget has been set aside towards the payment of such interest.

(2) (a) the steps that the department has taken to consult with NPOs around the Sector Funding Policy included extensive consultative sessions throughout the nine Provinces that were held with the sector (NPOs) during the development of the Policy.

(b) The steps that have been taken by the Department to implement the policy included the development of the Sector Funding Guidelines and NPOs and departmental officials will be trained on the guidelines commencing in the second quarter, 2021/22 financial year.

 

22 June 2021 - NW1486

Profile picture: McGluwa, Mr JJ

McGluwa, Mr JJ to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether her department has concluded any work exchange and/or employment agreements with any entity of the Republic of Cuba from the 2010-11 financial year up to the 2020-21 financial year; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what (a) total number of Cuban nationals (i) have been employed in each of the specified financial years and/or (ii) are due to be employed in the 2021-23 Medium-Term Expenditure Framework period, (b) are the details of the work that each of the specified Cuban nationals was and/or will be employed to perform, (c) are the details of the specific skills sets that each of the specified Cuban nationals possessed and/or will possess that South African nationals did or will not possess and (d) are the details of the total cost of employing each of the specified Cuban nationals in each case; 2) whether her department took any steps to ensure that the specific skills set of the specified Cuban nationals were and/or will not be available in the Republic amongst South African citizens; if not, in each case, why not; if so, what are the relevant details of the (a) steps taken and (b) outcomes of the steps taken in this regard?

Reply:

(1)(2) The Department of Social Development has not engaged Cuban experts on the said matter during the said period.

15 June 2021 - NW1430

Profile picture: Gondwe, Dr M

Gondwe, Dr M to ask the Minister of Social Development

With reference to her reply to question 696 and question 697 on 23 March 2021, (a) on what date did the specified SA Social Security Agency (SASSA)-led investigations commence, (b) what number of the specified investigations (i) have actually been resolved and (ii) are still outstanding, (c) who specifically at SASSA is conducting the investigations, (d) what number of people at SASSA are currently responsible for conducting the investigations and (e) how are the investigations being conducted?

Reply:

With reference to her reply to question 696 and question 697 on 23 March 2021, (a) on what date did the specified SA Social Security Agency (SASSA)-led investigations commence

On 9 July 2020, SASSA received the findings from the Auditor General containing 20797 exceptions relating to the Covid-19 SRD grant. These exceptions included 216 government employees (PERSAL registered) who received the special COVID 19 SRD grant for the month of May 2020.

On 16 July 2020, SASSA received additional findings from the Auditor General containing 11845 exceptions of which 25 related to government employees (PERSAL registered) who received the special COVID 19 SRD grant for the month of May 2020.

Thus the total number of government employees who were flagged by the Auditor General is 241.

On 7 August 2020 SASSA received additional findings from the Auditor General containing 1513 exceptions consisting of company directors whose companies had received payment for government contracts. It is important to highlight that SASSA did not have access to the databases that the Auditor General used to identify the exceptions.

SASSA’s Project Management Office, upon consideration of the reports of the Auditor General and in consultation with management immediately suspended payments to certain categories of Covid 19 SRD grant beneficiaries. Among those that were immediately suspended were payments to the implicated government employees and the 1513 company directors.

As a result of the suspension of the payments, the implicated government employees each received R350 for May 2020 and no more.

SASSA engaged the Auditor General on the exceptions/findings with particular focus on some of the discrepancies. For instance, of the sample records tested from the findings provided by AGSA for instance the Grants it was noted that the applicants did not receive any grants in April 2020 – they only received grant payments from May 2020 and thus qualified to receive the R350 in May 2020. This was confirmed during a walkthrough with the AGSA on the system in terms of two records which AGSA themselves had chosen for verification and validation.

SASSA placed a focus on the 1513 company directors and the 241 government employees who received the Covid-19 SRD grant for further investigation.

SASSA has since written to the Departments where the implicated officials are employed so that disciplinary action can be taken including recovering the monies that were paid. Most of the implicated government employees work for the Department of Education (75), Department of Health (71) and the Department of Transport (45), with the remaining 50 officials spread across 16 departments.

The investigation into company directors who benefitted from the Covid funds was referred to the Fusion Centre that consists of various law enforcement bodies for further processing.

(b) what number of the specified investigations (i) have actually been resolved and (ii) are still outstanding

Please note that none of the investigations have been finalised. The Fusion Centre is still conducting the investigation into the company directors. Regarding, public servants, SASSA is engaging the relevant departments to ensure that the monies are recovered.

(c) who specifically at SASSA is conducting the investigations

The investigations at SASSA Head Office are conducted by 2 Fraud managers, 2 assistant managers and 1 specialist.

(d) what number of people at SASSA are currently responsible for conducting the investigations

The Fraud Management department at Head Office has 5 investigators, two of which are managers (level 12), 2 are assistant managers (level 10) and 1 level 8 specialist.

The post of General Manager: Fraud Management has been vacant for more than 5 years. However, this position has been advertised and a new GM: Fraud Manager has been appointed and expected to start duty as of 01 June 2021. The Fraud Management department does not have senior managers. In the interim the General Manager: Information Management has been assisting in managing the Department in addition to his normal functions.

This team is responsible for conducting all the investigations that emanate from Head Office or are cross-cutting, including SASSA card related fraud, general administration including supply chain matters, and the special Covid 19 SRD grant related matters.

(e) how are the investigations being conducted?

Due to shortage of staff, the SASSA fraud team relies primarily on data analytics in conducting its investigations. In addition the Fraud Management team works with law enforcement agencies, other state institutions and banking industry partners. Where possible the team also conducts field visits as part of the investigations.

It should be noted that the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) is also conducting investigations emanating from the presidential proclamations numbers R.37 of 2019 and R. 23 of 2020.

In addition, in February 2021 SASSA requested the Special Investigating Unit to assist the Agency with forensic specialists to conduct complex investigations.

15 June 2021 - NW1439

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether, in light of the number of social grants that increased from 2 million in 1994 to 18,2 million in December 2020, she has found that the SA Social Security Agency (SASSA) can sustain the R190 billion annual social assistance programme, taking into account the extra 6 million unemployed Social Relief of Distress grant beneficiaries since May 2020; (2) whether SASSA is considering a more comprehensive social protection system; if not, how does SASSA envisage to sustain the current programme; if so, what are the relevant details of the programme?

Reply:

1. Yes, the Department can sustain the social assistance budget of R190 billion. This allocation is made in terms of the Social Assistance Act (Act 13 of 2004),which mandates government to provide social assistance to specified categories of vulnerable people, including children, the elderly above the age of 60 years and persons with disabilities. All the social grants are means tested, with the exception of the foster child grant, to ensure that only the most vulnerable are able to access it. Over the past 20 years, the budget has been kept constant at around 3% of the national gross domestic product (GDP), thus staying more or less in line with the economic performance of the country.

2. Yes, the Department is considering a more comprehensive social security system, which will create a three-pillar system comprising social grants, contributory social insurance and voluntary insurance to ensure that those who are able to contribute towards their own social security provision are provided with appropriate institutional platforms to participate in social security cover. The policy makes extensive proposals for ensuring that all working people in the country, both in the formal sector and those in atypical forms of employment are mandated or encouraged to make contributions during their working years, so that they will have adequate income in the event of retirement, death or disability. These policy proposals will be the subject of wide stakeholder consultations during this financial year.

15 June 2021 - NW1515

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether there has been any feedback yet from the Treasury with regard to her department’s request to have the R350 grant extended; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

The request for the extension of the R350 grant has been processed through the relevant structures within government and as soon as guidance has been provided, the Department will be in a position to respond to the public accordingly.

15 June 2021 - NW1279

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)With reference to the special COVID-19 report of the Auditor-General, what (a) number of beneficiaries were over-paid in May 2020, (b) amount was overpaid and (c) number of beneficiaries were not paid as a result of the specified overpayments; 2) (a) what consequence management measures were instituted due to the food parcels not agreeing with the content list of the Social Relief of Distress grant and (b) how was the distribution of food parcels monitored; (3) whether the food parcels only reached the intended beneficiaries; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

1(a) Following a reconciliation of all available information, a total of 31 929 grants were paid to clients who did not qualify for these in the period from May to July 2020. The grants were paid as the information available to SASSA at the time excluded databases of COVID relief paid to citizens through other government programmes such as the relief to sportsmen, spaza shop owners and farmers. In addition, SASSA only received the database from correctional services which included information on inmates in correctional facilities later in the process.

(b) A total of R11 175 950 was paid to citizens who did not qualify.

(c) No qualifying beneficiary was not paid as a result of the above incorrect payments.

2(a) All food parcels which were identified as not complying with the standard set for food parcels issued by SASSA were replaced by the relevant service provider.

(b) The distribution of food parcels was monitored by SASSA staff in the provinces, as the food parcels were distributed. SASSA staff were available at all distribution points to confirm the content of the food parcel, that the food parcel was collected by the approved beneficiary and that the invoices for food parcels distributed was received from the relevant service provider.

3. The food parcels were distributed to the approved applicants. Where an approved applicant did not arrive to collect the allocated food parcel, the parcel would be distributed to another approved beneficiary, after following a standard process to cancel the initial application and replace it with another applicant, who met the qualifying criteria.

The processes followed at the time were all manual, as SASSA was operating under Level 5 lockdown restrictions, with minimal staff available for this project.

In conclusion of the project, SASSA undertook a reconciliation process, to ensure that for every food parcel ordered and distributed, there was an approved application form; and that the support provided was captured on our grant system. This has taken a lot longer than initially planned, but has been now been completed.

04 June 2021 - NW1001

Profile picture: Abrahams, Ms ALA

Abrahams, Ms ALA to ask the Minister of Social Development

With reference to the Early Childhood Development-Employment Stimulus Relief Fund (ECD-ESRF) applications received in each of the provinces before 26 February 2021 deadline, (a) on what date will applicants receive the relief package and (b) what (i) total number of applications have been received, (ii) is the ECD registration status of applicants, (iii) is the number of applications that fall within poor wards according to the Statistics SA Multidimensional Poverty Index and (iv) is the total number of (aa) ECD employees who will benefit, (bb) children who attend the ECDs and (cc) ECDs who have committed to re-opening within 60 days of receipt of the ECD-ESRF?

Reply:

a) The applicants receive the relief package as and when they pass the verification process. Currently eight thousand and eighty-seven (8 083) ECD services with thirty-three thousand five hundred and twenty three thousand and seventy nine (23 079) employees have been paid.

b) (i) A total of 28,283 applications were received.

Eastern Cape

3778

Free state

1493

Gauteng

6023

KwaZulu-Natal

5415

Limpopo

4250

Mpumalanga

1928

North West

1478

Northern Cape

749

Western Cape

3169

 

(ii) The applicants received are either fully/conditionally registered or unregistered.

(iii) 39% of applications falls within poor wards according to the Statistics SA Multidimensional Poverty Index. The breakdown according to provinces:

Province

% Applications in Poor Wards

% Wards that are poverty declared

Eastern Cape

67%

72%

Free State

4%

8%

Gauteng

12%

10%

KwaZulu-Natal

55%

74%

Limpopo

84%

82%

Mpumalanga

37%

17%

North West

53%

43%

Northern Cape

22%

12%

Western Cape

0%

0%

(iv) (aa) A total of 108 833 ECD employees is targeted to benefit, however after the verification based on the applications received 116 578.

(bb) There are over 450 000 children who attend the ECD programmes since reopening of ECD services in July 2020. It is not immediately possible

to have the accurate numbers.

(cc) Every applicant committed to re-open within 60 days after receipt of funding as it was one of the requirements.

04 June 2021 - NW1423

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

What are the reasons that R666 million was not billed in the 2018-19 financial year, (b) who is not paying as her department is struggling to recover debts and only two material irregularities were found which amount to a loss of R1,9 million and (c) how far is the investigation regarding the lease agreement with the Department of Defence?

Reply:

I would like to inform the Honourable Member that neither the Department nor any of its entities has a lease agreement with the Department of Defence.

04 June 2021 - NW1376

Profile picture: Arries, Ms LH

Arries, Ms LH to ask the Minister of Social Development

What (a) is the current backlog of adoption services in the Republic and (b) impact does the delay in processing adoption applications have on the (i) children and (ii) prospective parents?

Reply:

a) Currently, the Department does not have backlog as we have cleared all outstanding adoption cases.

(i) Not applicable

(ii) Not applicable

04 June 2021 - NW1504

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether her department has been informed of the questions surrounding the qualifications of the newly-appointed North West Social Development Head of Department; if not, why not; if so, (a) has her department verified the qualifications, (b) how was the specified appointment made and (c) was due process followed during the appointment process?

Reply:

No, this matter falls under the purview of the Premier who is the Executing Authority responsible for the appointment at this level in the Province.

a) Qualifications of candidates are verified by the South African Qualifications Authority and I am advised by the Province that this was done as part of the recruitment process.

b) The appointment was made by the Premier following concurrence received from the Minister of Public Service and Administration.

c) The prescribed recruitment and selection processes for the appointment of the Head of Department was followed, as advised by the Provincial Department of Social Development.

In terms of the Public Service Act, 1994 and the 2016 Public Service Regulations the authority for the appointment of Heads of Department (HODs) at the provincial sphere of government rests with the relevant Premiers. In the case of the North West Provincial Administration, which is under section 100 of the Constitution, 1996 administration, the Premier, Prof. Job Mokgoro agreed in terms a protocol governing the Section 100 (1) (b) intervention in the Office of the Premier, that all of his administrative decisions will be subject to concurrence by the Minister for the Public Service and Administration (MPSA), before approval. This includes decisions to appoint HODs. Under normal circumstances, these decisions are not subject to consultation with Ministers at the national sphere of government, or Cabinet, as the case would be for the appointment for HODs at the national sphere of Government.  

04 June 2021 - NW1173

Profile picture: Ngcobo, Mr S

Ngcobo, Mr S to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether she will furnish Mr S Ngcobo with a list indicating (a) the total number of non-governmental organisations (NGO) that (i) are registered in the disability sector and (ii) are funded by her department in each province and (b) the total amount of funding allocated for each specified NGO; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

a) (i) The total number of non-governmental organisations (NGO) that are registered in the disability sector is 3 765; as below:

Province

Count of NPOs by Province

Eastern Cape

337

Free State

226

Gauteng

975

Kwa-Zulu Natal

605

Limpopo

526

Mpumalanga

375

North West

230

Northern Cape

107

Western Cape

384

Grand Total

  1. 765
  1.  

(ii) the number of NGOs funded by the department in each province as follows:

Province

Number of NPOs funded by the Province

Eastern Cape

86

Free State

97

Gauteng

111

Kwa-Zulu Natal

180

Limpopo

87

Mpumalanga

141

North West

47

Northern Cape

27

Western Cape

154

Grand Total

930

(b) the total amount of funding allocated for each specified NGO, detailed as per attached Annexures:

Annexure A - Eastern Cape

Annexure B - Free State

Annexure C - Gauteng

Annexure D - Kwa Zulu Natal

Annexure E - Limpopo

Annexure F - Mpumalanga

Annexure G - Northern Cape

Annexure H - North West

Annexure I - Western Cape

 

04 June 2021 - NW1089

Profile picture: Opperman, Ms G

Opperman, Ms G to ask the Minister of Social Development

With reference to her department’s presentation on its Third Quarter performance to the Portfolio Committee on Social Development on 17 March 2021, what (a) are the root causes for the 14% performance decline in the Third Quarter compared to the Second Quarter and (b) corrective measures have been implemented to address the 14% decline?

Reply:

National Assembly Written Reply: 1089 of 2021

a) The following are performance areas which contributed to the decline in performance during the third quarter. There has been significant progress made in meeting some of the targets that could not be met at the end of the third quarter:

  • Entity Oversight: At the time of reporting, The Entity Governance and Oversight Framework could not be presented at governance structures as anticipated. DSD Management decided that the framework be finalized using internal expertise. As a result, DSD has since finalized the Framework and it was approved before end of March 2021. The implementation of the Framework will continue in the new financial year.
  • Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E): The Analysis of existing M&E tools within Social Sector Programmes was not achieved at the time of reporting. More substantial work has since been concluded including the draft “as-is report” on all existing M&E tools in the Sector as well as a draft M&E Framework with indicators for 5 priority programmes within DSD.
  • Human Capital Management: The Sector Human Resources Plan was to be presented in the relevant Departmental management structures. The Plan did not serve on time as planned because critical inputs were being incorporated and the targets were also to be presented in the 4th quarter. To date, the Sector Human Resource Plan (SHRP) has been finalised and has been approved by Departmental Management Committee and a forum of all Heads of Social Development on 9 March 2021.
  • Social Assistance: The target of Monthly transfers of funds to SASSA was not achieved, since the DSD does not “transfer’ the funds, but the funds are provided in monthly allocations to SASSA to pay social grants. The Auditor-General has advised that the use of the word “transfer” is inaccurate, which means the target will never be achieved. The DSD has revised the indicator in its 2021/22 APP to address the ambiguity.
  • Social Security: The Regulations to the Social Assistance Amendment Act were not approved for public comment until early January 2021. The Regulations were subsequently published for public comments with the closing date of 24 February 2021. The Regulations were revised and completed based on public comments. The Regulations will be finalised during the first quarter of 2021/22 financial year.
  • Early Childhood Development (ECD): The target to employ 36 111 compliance monitors to monitor the norms and standards and COVID-19 compliance in DSD managed and supported facilities was not achieved. This was due to funds being allocated towards the ECD Stimulus Relief Fund instead of appointment of compliance monitors. However, many ECDs will be supported through the allocated R496 million for the ECD Presidential Employment Stimulus Relief Fund, which seeks to provide employment protection for an additional 80 000 employees in the ECD sector.
  • Families: The Framework for review of the White Paper on Families was not completed due to misalignment between the third quarter APP target and the set process to achieve the annual target. To date, consultations have been completed and the review of the White Paper has been completed.
  • Professional Social Services: The Draft Social Service Practitioners Bill could not be submitted to the Office of Chief State Law Advisor (OCSLA) for precertification due to lack of capacity to support the drafting process at the National office. Provincial departments have assisted with the redrafting of the Bill and the Bill has been submitted to the office of Chief State Law Advisor for Pre-Certification.
  • Population and Development: The annual target of Research report on Youth perception survey on Socio-economic, health, & gender on Impact of COVID19 was not achieved. The appointment of a Research Institution to conduct this study required approval from National Treasury, which was only granted in October 2020. Other procurement and contract management processes had to follow after receipt of National Treasury approval. The remaining time was not sufficient to complete the final study reports as planned. The timelines of the study have been adjusted to ensure that the study is completed in the new financial year.

b) The Department held intensive Programme Performance Review meetings in February 2021 to interrogate the root causes of decline in performance. During these Review Meetings, Management committed to implement various corrective actions to ensure improvement in performance for all areas where targets were not achieved in the third quarter. Preliminary analysis of the year-end performance of the Department shows improvement in achievement of set targets as compared to the third quarter. This improved performance may be attributed to the intensive Branch Performance Review Sessions and corrective actions which were implemented during the last quarter of the financial year.

04 June 2021 - NW633

Profile picture: Arries, Ms LH

Arries, Ms LH to ask the Minister of Social Development

What (a) total number of early childhood development (ECD) centres are equipped to handle disabled children in the Republic and (b) measures has she taken to ensure that the needs of disabled children are provided for in ECD centres?

Reply:

PROVINCE

(a) total number of early childhood development (ECD) centres are equipped to handle disabled children in the Republic

(b)Measures taken to ensure that the needs of disabled children are provided for in ECD centres

EC

The Eastern Cape has 34 Special Day Care Centres for Children living with Disabilities.

The 34 Special Day Care Centres for Children living with Disability has been funded for 2021/22 financial year.

FS

There are 10 ECD centres equiped to handle children with disabilities.

All these centres are equiped with ramps, rails and disablitiy accesable toilet facilities.

A 5% of the subsidy is utilised to procure stimulation material that includes children with disablities.

In ECD centres where children with disablities are admitted, the Department in partnership with the Department of Education and Health provides appropriate care and support using the strategy on scerening, idenfication and Support (SIAS) to assess in order to curb the unnecasessary placement in day care centres thereby promoting mainstreaming.

The ECD classrooms are made approriate and play equipment adapted to accomodate children with Disabilities.

GP

There are 73 ECD centres that are currently accomodating children with disabilities.

The province has partnered with a Sector on Persons with Disabilities to capacitate ECD Practitioners on the identification, learning and stimulation of children with special needs to promote inclusion.The indicator is on the Province APP to ensure inclusion of children with disabilities in the sector.

KZN

All the funded ECD centers in KwaZulu Natal are equipped to handle disabled children.

The educators in ECD Centers were trained to handle children with disabilities. The Province did revamps in the ECD Centers for easy access by children with disabilities.

LP

There are hundred and two (102) centres

There are on-going capacity building sessions on management of children with disabilities offered by a multi-disciplinary team (Primary Health Care Practitioners, Occupational, speech and hearing therapists) from the Department of Health. A 5% of the subsidy is utilised to procure stimulation material.

NC

The centres are not fully equipped to render ECD services to all children with disabilities. The Northern-Cape Province had seven (7) ECD Facilities registered as centres providing ECD services to children with disabilities, but two (2) of the seven (7) centres closed and two (2) decided to mainstream due to poor attendance of children younger than seven (7) years.

parents and practitioners are supported and capacitated through programmes rendered by Uhambo, an NGO appointed by the Department of Health and Occupational Therapists stationed at clinics and some appointed by DBE to stimulate the children at the centres and at home.

NW

The Provincial Social

Development has

equipped 150 ECD

centres through

training of ECD

Practitioners on

Inclusive Education

for children with

special needs during

2019/20

financial year

The Department is continuously

Conducting workshops on the

minimum Norms and Standards that provides guidance on the accessibility of Partial Care and ECD Centres to children with disabilities.

A total number of 400 parents and caregivers were trained on parenting programme to enable them to provide Early Childhood Development services for children with special needs.

Training was also conducted in partnership with the Department of Health on the Nutrition Guideline for ECD practitioners from 134 ECD Centres.

WC

5 Registered facilities accommodates children with disabilities.

The focus on children with disabilities is an imperative. To this end, the Department is piloting the registration of partial care facilities/day care centres for children with disabilities to give effect to the legislative mandate prescribed by Chapter 5 of the Children’s Act, 38 of 2005.  One registration was concluded already.

In addition, the department funds two social service organisations to provide capacity to ECD practitioners to encourage inclusion of children with special needs using the inclusive education and persona dolls approaches.

National Assembly Written Reply: 633 of 2021

________________________

Approved by the Minister of Social Development

Date……………………….