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Banks are ready to assist with social grant crisis - BASA

BASA’s Cas Coovadia says many of the nearly seven million grant recipients who have Sassa cards also have personal accounts with banks.

Picture: EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The Banking Association of South Africa (BASA) says banks are ready to deliver social grants “from tomorrow” at a low cost and without abuse of the system.

BASA’s Cas Coovadia says many of the nearly seven million grant recipients who have Sassa cards also have personal accounts with banks into which grants can be paid immediately.

Coovadia says Sassa would need to provide details to help identify these accounts, but the association has made little headway in discussions with the agency.

“We’ve had numerous meetings with the department, Sassa, Treasury and all the people involved. We’ve taken the consistent view that we can use the existing bank structure to this. We can do this tomorrow.”

He says all banks have low-cost accounts.

“Government says they want to solve two things. It needs to be low cost, cheaper than CPS and there should be no abuse of the system. We’re saying we can solve this and don’t want to make money out of this.”

BASA has previously warned that the distribution of social grants is at risk of unnecessary disruption because of the time it’s taking to implement the Constitutional Court's order that it put a new payment system in place by 1 April.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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