Cosatu wants R350 social grant made permanent and increased to R624

Cosatu parliamentary coordinator Matthew Parks said the social relief should not just be made permanent but increased.

FILE: The lengthy queue at the Maponya Mall Sassa office where some people have been waiting since the night before in order to get their social grants. Picture: Kgomotso Modise/Eyewitness News

CAPE TOWN - Trade union federation Cosatu said that it not only wanted the R350 social relief grant made permanent, it also wanted it increased to R624.

Cosatu made the call while making a submission during public hearings on the Second Special Appropriation Bill public hearings on Friday.

The bill proposes urgent additional funding of R32.8 billion to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic and the aftermath of the July riots in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

Cosatu said that the bill would provide badly-needed relief to thousands of workers and businesses in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng that suffered massive losses during the recent unrest.

But the trade union federation said that when it comes to the social grant relief, this should be a national issue.

Cosatu parliamentary coordinator, Matthew Parks, said that the social relief should not just be made permanent but increased.

"Our proposal on the Sassa allocations is to make the R350 grant or SRD grant permanent, to extend it beyond March 2022 and to see if we can increase it to the level of the food poverty line, which is now estimated by StatsSA to be about R624."

Parks has also called on Parliament to put pressure on Sassa to improve its payment system.

He said that the Post Office should also use an additional R500 million in funding to improve its system and move away from physical payments.

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