The UIF TERS Scheme provided by the South African government has now come to an end after the applications for the last period closed on 31 December 2020. Many wonder why there has not been an extension due to the extended alert Level 3 lockdown.
The Unemployment Insurance Fund Covid-19 Temporary Employer-Employee Relief Scheme (TERS) was funding which the government planned to distribute to help South Africans through the tough financial period brought about by Covid-19. This was initially meant to last for 3 months however it was extended as the country continued to battle with the coronavirus.
This scheme has brought financial relief to million of workers in the country since 27 March 2020.
It has now been stopped after the applications for the last period from 16 September 2020 to 15 October 2020, closed on 31 December 2020.
Many people and organisations have requested that the UIF Covid-19 TERS Scheme be extended as it has provided great help to those who have been unable to work due to Covid-19, however no extension has been made for the year 2021.
Many argue that after the National State of Disaster was extended due the adjusted alert Level 3 lockdown, that the scheme should be extended too.
MEC for Economic Opportunities David Maynier told CapeTalk Radio that he planned to write to the Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi urging him to extend the UIF Covid-19 TERS Scheme for the duration of the Alert Level 3 restrictions.
The restrictions under the Level 3 lockdown, such as the curfew and the alcohol ban has seen many businesses face financial strain and many employees have had to be laid off to ensure that businesses survive.
When asked why there was no relief package announced with the latest restrictions, President Cyril Ramaphosa told the media that the country could not afford it.
“We do not have the money, that’s the simple truth that has to be put out there. We are constrained from a financing point of view.
“Right now, we are at a stage where we now have to fund the vaccines which is going to amount to a lot of money as well so we are constrained but we’re also hoping that these measures will not be measures that will go on for too long.” -President Cyril Ramaphosa
UIF beneficiaries who are still affected by closures of their workplaces due to Covid-19 will now be compensated through the existing Short Term/Reduced Work Time Benefit.