Sapo chief says system being upgraded ahead of grant payments takeover

Mark Barnes on Monday visited a Sapo pay point at Jabulani Mall in Soweto where some computers weren’t working.

 South African Post Office (Sapo) CEO Mark Barnes chats with Sassa beneficiaries at Kwa-Xuma post office, Soweto on 3 September 2018. Picture: @PostofficeSa/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – The South African Post Office (Sapo) CEO Mark Barnes says technology is being upgraded ahead of the official takeover of grant payments next month.

From 1 October, the Post Office will be responsible for the distribution of social grants to over 12 million South Africans as the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa)'s contract with Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) comes to an end.

Barnes on Monday visited a Sapo pay point at Jabulani Mall in Soweto where some computers weren’t working.

Beneficiaries complained about queuing for over four hours, with the elderly made to stand in the sun.

Barnes says the system will be updated.

“We’re upgrading all of the branches and all the technology and the network. We’ve taken fibre to the branch network. It’s the systemic upgrade of the entire system and that’s already happened.”

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)