The Western Cape Minister of Social Development, Sharna Fernandez, welcomes the reinstatement of the special R350 COVID-19 Social Relief of Distress (SRD) Grant. In the spirit of collaboration and to coordinate humanitarian relief efforts being implemented in the Western Cape, she will request the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) for an urgent meeting.
The request is made against the backdrop of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement, on Sunday 25 July 2021, that the special SRD R350 grant would be reinstated and available to vulnerable citizens, until the end of March 2022.
“We are aware of the continuing humanitarian crisis that we face in the City, Province and Country, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the various alert level restrictions that have been implemented under the Disaster Management Act.
While SASSA is responsible for providing social relief of distress, in terms of Chapter 3 of the Social Assistance Act, we recognise that the provincial Department of Social Development (DSD) also has a role to play in this regard," said Minister Fernandez.
"The DSD is one of many role-players contributing to humanitarian relief and has been working to supplement national government’s short-term emergency food relief programs to vulnerable individuals, families and households during the pandemic.
As such, we believe that ongoing engagements between the DSD and SASSA throughout the pandemic have introduced a series of measures to protect the well-being and livelihoods of residents in the Western Cape, in particular, the most vulnerable,” added Minister Fernandez.
"Time and time again, we have shown that our efforts as Government are most effective when we work in partnership with, other government agencies, NGOs and communities. In this regard, we require the support of other government agencies such as SASSA, to help ensure that there are appropriate responses when it comes to supporting vulnerable communities," concluded Minister Fernandez.