CPS ordered to pay back R316m it received from Sassa

23 March 2018 - 14:59 By Naledi Shange
“This judgment reinforces the immense importance of procurement processes as a bulwark against corruption and maladministration‚” said David Lewis‚ Corruption Watch’s executive director.
“This judgment reinforces the immense importance of procurement processes as a bulwark against corruption and maladministration‚” said David Lewis‚ Corruption Watch’s executive director.
Image: Business Times

The High Court in Pretoria has ordered Cash Paymaster Services to pay back the R316-million it received from South Africa Social Security Agency (Sassa) for the registration and payment of grant beneficiaries‚ Corruption Watch said on Friday.

The money has to be paid back with interest.

"Corruption Watch celebrates the judgment handed down today by Judge Moroa Tsoka ordering Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) to pay back‚ in full‚ the R316‚447‚361.41 received from Sassa‚ with interest accrued since June 2014 until the date of payment‚" the group said in a statement.

“This judgment reinforces the immense importance of procurement processes as a bulwark against corruption and maladministration‚” said David Lewis‚ Corruption Watch’s executive director.

“However‚ while we are confined to reviewing administrative irregularities‚ we have long called on the criminal justice authorities to investigate the relationship between CPS‚ Sassa and the social development ministry. We repeat that call‚ as we do our call for the International Finance Corporation to review its significant shareholding in a company that conducts itself in the manner that CPS does.”

Lewis said their journey to stop this multi-million rand deal between Sassa and CPS had started in 2015.

The organisation had argued that there were serious irregularities surrounding the payment and the re-registration process.

Sassa eventually withdrew its opposition to the review application‚ leaving CPS as the sole respondent in the application.

Corruption Watch quoted Tsoka's judgement as saying: "As a result of Sassa’s unlawful conduct‚ the fiscus has been robbed of a substantial amount of money intended for the most vulnerable and poor people of our country… It is just and equitable that the payment of R316-million made by Sassa to CPS‚ together with interests‚ be returned to the fiscus for the benefit of those for whom it was intended in.”

This is a developing story.

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