Sassa battle: We'll be watching you‚ says Black Sash
NGO Black Sash said on Friday that the Constitutional Court has vindicated the organisation by preventing Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) from distributing personal details of social grants beneficiaries.
“The fact that grants will be paid is a victory for our democracy and the beneficiaries that are surviving on the grants. It’s very exciting‚” said Thandiwe Zulu‚ regional manager of Black Sash in Johannesburg.
The Constitutional Court on Friday ordered that Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) and the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) continue its invalid contract for a period of 12 months.
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Zulu said Black Sash will be monitoring all stakeholders involved in the distribution of grants and will see to it that the Constitutional Court order is followed through.
“Black Sash is about advocacy. That is our role. Whatever that has to happen‚ we will still be following through. However‚ what is more important for us is to see the law being upheld; to see our constitution being respected and the relevant structures within the government system coming into the space and take their role seriously.”
Asked if the beneficiaries deserved an apology from the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) and social development minister Bathabile Dlamini‚ Zulu said: “Those that were in the line should be talking to their conscience.”
Zulu said Black Sash has been advocating for the payment of grants to be a function of the state and not of the private sector.
“The whole payment of grants is a [state] function and should be done by the state. Ultimately for us as Black Sash‚ we have been saying Sassa was established mainly to pay the grants‚ so that is a function we should be working towards and it should be carried [out] accordingly.”
She said Black Sash will explain the judgment to beneficiaries‚ some of whom were present in court‚on Friday.
Paulina Masigo‚ 74‚ said she was relieved her grant will be paid on April 1.
“I am very happy that I will be receiving my money. I will be able to pay rent‚ groceries and my societies. I will also be also to pay the doctor if I get sick because the clinic is not accessible at night and on weekends‚” said Masigo‚ who suffers from diabetes and high blood pressure.