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Minister Shabangu berates Sassa officials

Social Development Minister Susan Shabangu has gone as far as to say they are colluding with CPS to coax beneficiaries into signing up for new bank accounts.

FILE: Social Development Minister Susan Shabangu. Picture: GCIS.

CAPE TOWN - Social Development Minister Susan Shabangu has berated South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) officials for adding to the woes of grant beneficiaries.

She has gone as far as to say they are colluding with cash payment provider Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) to coax beneficiaries into signing up for new bank accounts.

Shabangu has on Tuesday told the National Council of Provinces she’s given a directive to the Social Security Agency to close cash pay points.

Shabangu says by the end of September, there will no longer be any beneficiaries who need to receive their grants in cash.

Only around 600,000 beneficiaries of an initial 2.5 million, still have to be transferred to other payment options like retail shops and other merchants.

Shabangu says action is being taken through the courts against the unscrupulous staff of CPS.

Sassa staff she says are also not blameless in frustrating the process of transferring the payment system to the Post Office.

“If our members are involved in illicit activities, we can’t leave them. This is part of the process. It’s not a one-day issue... It's very complex.”

Shabangu says while the intention is to close cash pay points, this can only happen once the transfer to the Post Office has been completed.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)