Sassa beneficiaries seek alternative grant disburser after Postbank woes
Pensioners and those living with disabilities who received their grants from Postbank have been unable to access their money for over a week due to technical difficulties.
CAPE TOWN - The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) is being flooded by beneficiaries who want to opt out of receiving grants from Postbank in light of the most recent payment problems.
But for thousands of others in far-flung areas, payment options remain limited.
Minister of Social Development Lindiwe Zulu, and her communications counterpart Mondli Gungubele, will on Thursday seek to explain the problems that prevented pensioners and those living with disabilities from receiving grants for over a week.
Zulu on Wednesday apologised in Parliament for the payment problems, as members of Parliament (MPs) expressed their own frustration at not understanding what went wrong.
Postbank is responsible for paying grants to around 40% of Sassa's beneficiaries.
Sassa's grants administrator Brenton van Vrede said the agency's ramping up its operations to assist beneficiaries affected by the recent payment glitch.
“We've also seen a huge influx into our local offices where people are requesting to change their bank account details to get their money into another bank account.”
A new payment switch meant money from failed transactions was erroneously deducted from beneficiaries' accounts.
Acting director-general of the Department of Social Development Linton Mchunu said the department was not at fault.
“The challenges have been on Postbank’s side. We've been meeting literally daily to try and resolve the issues.”
MPs said that despite claims that some 500,000 cases were almost all resolved, they were still being inundated by beneficiaries who could not access their money.