Where there is opportunity, criminality will soon follow. That’s the message coming from the DA, who have apparently unearthed a group of chancers who are taking advantage of those applying for the new R350 SASSA grant. The monthly payment is expected to help ease the financial pressure on millions of citizens.
Bridget Masango is the shadow social development minister. The politician has been sent documents that prove scam artists are trying to profit from the government’s latest scheme, by charging people R15 or more in exchange for their help with applying for the ‘Social Relief of Distress’ grant.
Tech-shy recipients have struggled with the process, which requires the use of WhatsApp and email communication. Masango states that those demanding a fee in exchange for assistance are ‘preying on the vulnerable’.
The DA representative has advised South Africans to avoid making such transactions, telling them to visit newly reopened SASSA offices to settle any grievances instead.
“The DA has seen ‘advertisements’ of people offering their services, in some instances requesting a fee, to ‘help’ vulnerable South Africans struggling to apply for the R350 SASSA grant. And desperate South Africans are all too eager to pay these miscreants in order to find relief for their dire situations.”
“The Minister must ensure that those in her care are protected from criminals seeking every opportunity to prey on those left desperate and vulnerable. She simply cannot stand by and watch as thieves take advantage of our people. Criminal elements took the gap, and now take advantage of vulnerable citizens.”Bridget Masango
Masango has written to her opposite number, Lindiwe Zulu, in a bid to get more SASSA employees back to work so they can sort this mess. Critics have also argued that the government haven’t communicated themselves properly when it comes to explaining the R350 grant and how people can stake their claim.
Unhappiness over R350 unemployment grant, many say it will benefit mostly men since child support grant beneficiaries do not qualify.— Entrepreneur Zone (@SayEntrepreneur) May 12, 2020
Over 750 000 have applied for SASSA's R350 unemployment grant. pic.twitter.com/BojDEyhD1Z