Some grants, food security programmes affected by July riots, Zulu tells SAHRC

The minister said that some storage facilities where food for the department’s community nutrition programme was stored and packaged were among the buildings that were burnt down.

Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu testifies virtually at the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) inquiry into the July riots on 1 December 2021. Picture: @SAHRCommission/Twitter

DURBAN - Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu has told the inquiry into the July anarchy that food security programmes and grant distribution services were affected when the violence swept through KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

Zulu, who has tested positive for COVID-19, is testifying virtually at the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) inquiry sitting in Umhlanga on Wednesday morning.

The minister has reported that some storage facilities where food for the department’s community nutrition programme was stored and packaged were among the buildings that were burnt down.

"The July unrest severely disrupted the food supply chain networks and affected food distribution and mainly food accessed by the poor and vulnerable. This is because the disruption had an impact on the department, community nutrition and development centers," Minister Zulu said.

Zulu said that the violence also affected the distribution of social grants, which she described as a lifeline for vulnerable individuals and households, especially during the pandemic.

However, she said that 90% of the grants had already been paid when the violence broke out.

WATCH: SAHRC hearing into July unrest continues