Saftu urges govt to continue disbursing R350 COVID-19 grant

Saftu's Zwelinzima Vavi said the R350 grant cushioned the blow for many people who were destitute.

Social distancing is enforced at a shopping centre where social grant recipients are collecting their payouts on 30 March 2020. Picture: @The_DSD/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - The South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) said the end of government's special COVID-19 grant would plunge marginalised and unemployed people even further into poverty.

Considering the ailing economy, the federation said it's in the best interest of vulnerable citizens to have the grant extended.

The R350 COVID-19 social relief of distress grant was implemented last year for unemployed citizens who were not receiving any other forms of social relief.

Although the R350 grant ended, beneficiaries awaiting funds will still be able to collect this at any point in the future.

New applications, however, will no longer be processed.

Saftu's Zwelinzima Vavi said the grant cushioned the blow for many who were destitute.

He said by discontinuing this form of aid, millions of citizens would have to fend for themselves.

"The impact is going to be big. No matter how small the R350 was, it made some difference and now they are being thrown to the wolves."

A nationwide strike is planned for the end of next month in protest the discontinuation of the grant.

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