Minister Zulu in talks to reintroduce R350 social relief of distress grant

The social relief of distress grant was implemented last year for unemployed citizens who were not receiving any other forms of social relief. It expired on Sunday.

FILE: Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu. Picture: @The_DSD/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu has told Eyewitness News discussions were under way to see if the government’s R350 special grant could be provided again.

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

It expired on Sunday.

Minister Zulu said that there was a possibility that the R350 COVID-19 grant could be made available again.

"The conversations have never stopped with regards to talking to the relevant structures, to look at the budget broadly and see if we can't do anything."

It’s not clear where the government will get more money from, but Zulu said that she hoped that the grant would return as millions of South Africans were dependent on it.

"It's no longer an issue of 'are you going to do it', no we are not there anymore. We're now at what legislation is needed for it, what financial model it's supposed to be, how we're going to get the money..."

Meanwhile, the South African Federation of Trade Unions' Zwelinzima Vavi has called for the funds to be increased and distributed for another five months.

"We are calling on the government to increase it at least to R550 in the meantime while preparing to introduce the basic income grant."

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