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Sassa reconsidering declined R350 grant applications for possible payout

Earlier this month Sassa announced that most applications had been rejected because applicants were already registered on the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) database.

FILE: South African Social Security Agency in Pretoria. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Are you one of the almost 50% of applicants who applied for the R350 coronavirus unemployment grant but were declined? Your application may just be reconsidered.

The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) said that it was reconsidering the many declined applications to get to the bottom of the reasons for rejection.

Earlier this month, Sassa announced that most applications had been rejected because applicants were already registered on the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) database.

The high cost and turnaround time involved in the appeal process was another reason that the agency said that it was reconsidering applications rather than going the lengthier route.

"In early June, close to 50% of processed applications did not qualify in terms of the criteria. Over 70% of those that did not qualify were either receiving or qualifying for UIF benefits according to the database that Sassa was using then to sift through the applications. Subsequently, Sassa took a decision to request an updated database to reconsider the declined UIF cases instead of advising the aggrieved applicants to follow the appeals route, it said.

"Out of this reconsideration process, it emerged that 85% of the UIF cases which were previously deemed not to be qualifying, actually qualify. They have been approved and are being made aware of this development individually as and when such favourable decision is reached. Everyone affected will receive an SMS requesting them to provide their banking details."

According to Sassa stats, over 2.5 million applications from the over 3.2 million who applied have received their payouts.

“Updating the UIF database has brought such a relief to us and the affected beneficiaries, the numbers will rise daily until we have paid all deserving individuals who were previously declined”, said Totsie Memela, Sassa CEO.

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