R350 grant: SASSA disputs claims of increase to R700

Following the advert that has been circulating on social media that the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) has approved the payment of R700 for SRD grant for February and March, SASSA has since disputed the claims and labelled the message as fake news.

“In 2022 over 575 000 citizens will receive R700 payment. This is part of SASSA 2022 budget to support all South African citizens. Application has begun and the citizens that have applied have started getting their R700 payments. Only South African citizens can apply.” the advert read.

SASSA said it should be noted that the advert is fake and does not come from SASSA. “No additional grant type is offered apart from the ones announced by SASSA.”

When President Cyril Ramaphosa delivers the State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Thursday, February 10, he is anticipated to announce the renewal of the R350 COVID-19 Social Relief of Distress (SRD) award.

In January, Ramaphosa met with a group of civil society organizations, along with Minister of Social Development Lindiwe Zulu and Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana, to discuss the possibility of extending and improving the R350 grant.

Institute for Economic Justice (IEJ), Black Sash Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute (SPII), #PayTheGrants, and Amandla.mobi recommended extending the grant’s lifespan and eligibility conditions, as well as boosting the grant’s value.

According to the government, the stipend is being used by an increasing number of people. Its monthly recipients have increased from six million to 10,3 million since its inception. According to the Treasury, about 46% of the South African population receives some form of government assistance. Research has validated the grant’s good impact on reducing poverty and hunger.

“President Ramaphosa expressed his deep concern around the hardship faced by the more than 13 million unemployed and impoverished people in South Africa and the need for the government to protect the dignity of all its people while being mindful of the resource base,” said the Presidency.

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