SASSA UPDATE: More than 12 000 unaccounted Temporary Disability Grant clients
On Monday 29 March 2021, the Western Cape Minister for Social Development, Sharna Fernandez, met with SASSA regarding the nearly 53 000 Temporary Disability Grants (TDGs) and Care Dependency Grants that were suspended by the national agency, across the Western Cape, at the end of December 2020.
“Whilst I welcome that 31 587 Temporary Disability Grant beneficiaries have been booked for assessments, I am deeply concerned that to date, SASSA has indicated that 12 695 TDG beneficiaries have not presented themselves or applied for reassessment after their social grants lapsed in December 2020.
I have requested that SASSA provide a detailed breakdown at our next scheduled meeting. I have also requested the actual number and rand value of payments made to beneficiaries of Temporary Disability Grants,” said Minister Fernandez.
“I also remain concerned that SASSA still needs to process and assess a further 3745 Temporary Disability Grant beneficiaries. This is a mammoth task considering their original commitment, that all lapsed TDG beneficiaries would be assessed before SASSA’s deadline of the 31st March 2021.
As such, I have written to SASSA requesting what measures the National Government entity has put in place to ensure that all lapsed Temporary Disability Grant beneficiaries are assessed and paid beyond 31 March 2021, which seems likely,” added Minister Fernandez.
The National Department of Social Development made the following amendments to directions pertaining to the Temporary Disability Grants, which were published in the Government Gazette on 22 February 2021:
• Temporary Disability Grants which lapsed on 31 December 2020 and in January 2021 or are due to in February 2021 or 31 March 2021 for beneficiaries who are aged 59 and will turn 60 on or before 31 December 2021, must be paid until the beneficiary attains the age of 60 years.
• A Temporary Disability Grant paid with a grant-in-aid which lapsed at the end of December 2020, and a temporary disability grant which is paid together with a grant-in-aid which lapsed in January 2021 or is due to lapse in February 2021 or in March 2021, must continue to be paid for a period of three months after SASSA has scheduled an appointment for reassessment or until 31 March 2022, whichever occurs first.
• A Temporary Disability Grant payable through procurators and administrators which lapsed at the end of December 2020, and a temporary disability grant which is paid through a procurator and administrator which lapsed in January 2021 or is due to lapse in February 2021 or in March 202, must continue to be paid for a period of three months after SASSA has scheduled an appointment for reassessment or until 31 March 2022, whichever occurs first.
SASSA highlighted the following progress has been made as of Wednesday, 24th March 2021:
- A total of 31 587 Temporary Disability Grants assessment grant bookings have been finalized.
- 12 695 TDG beneficiaries have not presented themselves or applied for a reassessment of which, 200 beneficiaries are deceased.
- 1216 clients missed their medical assessment appointments.
- A further 3745 TDG clients still require assessments.
“Temporary Disability Grants serves as a lifeline to thousands of vulnerable families needing this form of state support. For this reason, we will continue to meet with SASSA to provide an update on the progress made to address their current challenges and ensure greater collaboration between SASSA and DSD,” concluded Minister Fernandez
Joshua Covenant Chigome
Spokesperson for the Minister of Social Development, Minister Sharna Fernandez
Tel: 021 483 9217
Cell: 083 661 4949