SRD grant

People queuing outside a post office to collect their R350 SRD grants.
Photo: Mkhuseli Sizani/GroundUp

SRD grant: Over R34m paid to refugees, R63m to asylum seekers

The Department of Social Development has revealed that SASSA has paid over R34m to refugees and R63m to asylum seekers in SRD grants.

SRD grant

People queuing outside a post office to collect their R350 SRD grants.
Photo: Mkhuseli Sizani/GroundUp

The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) has paid out over R34 million to  refugees and R63 million to asylum seekers in Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grants. 

This was revealed by Social Development Minister, Lindiwe Sisulu in a parliamentary response. 

ASYLUM SEEKERS AND REFUGEES BENEFIT FROM SRD GRANT

Economic Freedom Fighters had asked what the total number of refugees and asylum seekers receiving the SRD grant is and how much has been paid to them so far. 

The department said figures vary from month to month depending on the approval however as of September 2022

The department said the figures are for the two years that the Covid-19 R350 SRD grant has been running.

R34 456 800 was paid to  4 102 refugees while R63 113 750 was paid to 15 258 asylum seekers. 

SRD grant
People in a queue outside a SASSA office. PHOTO: iStock

Meanwhile, in October, Finance Minister, Enoch Godongwana, extended the SRD grant by another year to March 2024. It was meant to expire in March 2023.

Godongwana said no final decision has been made about a replacement or how it would be financed. As a result, the temporary grant will be extended for one year until March 2024.

The government has been considering a permanent replacement for the grant. One of the proposals is a basic income grant. Godongwana stressed that any permanent extension or replacement of the R350 grant will require an increase in revenue or spending cuts elsewhere.

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