President Ramaphosa, when announcing that the the Special Relief of Distress R350 grant would be extended until January, also made it clear that top-ups will not continue to be made on grants from SASSA. SASSA also previously announced that they would be extending temporary grants until December.
SASSA has said that top-ups would no longer be made on old-age grants, child support grants and foster grants as they were for lockdown.
During his address on government’s reconstruction and economic recovery plan last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa said:
All the top-ups which were linked to other forms of grants have come to an end and anybody who has been getting that top-up would not be extended until January.
Ramaphosa said that these top ups to the existing grants along with the Covid-19 Special Relief of Distress grant saw Government dishing out close to R40 billion to over 17 million people in South Africa.
“The evidence suggests that the expansion of social protection has kept more than 5 million people above the food poverty line during the past six months. The Special COVID-19 Grant, in particular, represents a significant achievement, reaching more than six million unemployed people in a short space of time,” Ramaphosa said.
“Over two million citizens lost their jobs in the country’s second financial quarter, the economy contracted by 16.4% when compared to the previous quarter, and National Treasury has said it expects a significant shortfall in revenue collection”, reported IOL.
This economic shock is unprecedented in our country, and it will take an extraordinary effort to recover from it
– President Cyril Ramaphosa
He also announced that the R350 grant would be extended for another three months and will then be terminated in Januray 2021. There was bad news however from the President. He explained that it would be too expensive for the country to make the R350 grant a permanent feature.
Ramaphosa said that the grant can’t be expanded beyond three months by saying, “The stretched nature of our financial resources does make it difficult and impossible to extend it beyond the three months.”
SASSA announced earlier this month that some temporary grants would be extended until December as well.
The temporary disability grants that lapsed in July, or were due to lapse between August – October 2020, have been extended until 31 December this year. Care dependency grants that were extended to October, or were due to lapse between November – December 2020, have been extended until 31 December this year.