MEC Patricia De Lille's Anti-Corruption Announcement
Minister of Social Development Patricia de Lille has temporarily delayed the process of payment to the 3 009 beneficiaries of the Emergency Relief Grant (ERG) for this year.
There is a total of R6.3 million available in the ERG account with the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA).
The Minister has made the decision based on 'a litany of errors by the Department of Social Development.
'No proper verification was done and the Social Worker Managers did not sign off on any of the assessment forms filled in by social workers,' says Ms De Lille.
'Regional Managers at Social Development did also not do a quality check to ensure that the Social Worker Managers had signed the forms off, or for accuracy.
'As the Minister of Social Development I then needed to get outside help to do the verification, before which I was not prepared to put my signature to the submission form, or to instruct SASSA to go ahead with the payments,' De Lille says.
This initial verification process uncovered the following:
- 5 beneficiaries whose names have appeared on the Western Cape Provincial Government payroll during the course of this year
- 5 incorrect ID numbers
- 2 ID numbers consisting of only 12 numbers, instead of 13
- And 7 duplicate payments to beneficiaries, meaning they would receive double the money because their names appear twice, or their ID numbers appear twice with different names
Each beneficiary gets two payments of R1080, one in December and one in January.
'I want to say to the genuine beneficiaries who desperately need the money - these people that think they can steal from the poor will be tracked down and punished,' De Lille says.
'We are also going to discipline the Department employees that haven't done their jobs properly, because poor people are suffering because of them.
'Let me assure the genuine beneficiaries that once we have moved the dodgy names off the list we will fast-track the verification process and try to get all of the first payments through before Christmas.
'It is no wonder that we experience so much fraud and corruption in the issuing of grants around the country, because people are simply ignoring the verification process,' says De Lille.
'I would like to call on all Social Development MECs to ensure that we root out the patronage and corruption in our midst.
'I am now going to do a forensic audit on the Emergency Relief Grant processes for the past two financial years and I would like to encourage the other MECs to do the same,' De Lille says.
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