Sassa could be summoned to appear in Parliament after no-show

This after officials failed to pitch for two meetings at Parliament on Wednesday, saying they had no substantial progress to report.

FILE: Sassa interim CEO Pearl Bhengu and Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini. Picture: Twitter/@The_DSD

CAPE TOWN – The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) could be summoned to appear before Parliament's Portfolio Committee on Social Development to account for delays in the takeover of grant payments.

This after officials failed to pitch for two meetings at Parliament on Wednesday, saying that they had no substantial progress to report.

MPs were having none of it, saying a scathing report by an independent panel of experts made it even more crucial that they account to the committee.

While Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini sent an apology, the committee noted that her deputy, Henrietta Bogapane-Zulu, had not.

She's also not attended a single meeting this year.

MPs say that by refusing to explain their lack of progress in taking over grant payments, Sassa is undermining them and their oversight role.

The Democratic Alliance’s Lindy Wilson says: “We are being embarrassed by the department we are supposed to represent. And we need to get the people here and we need to get them here urgently.”

The committee also wants the Auditor-General and the panel of experts to explain their findings detailed in a report to the Constitutional Court.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)