Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini has listed options available to her department and the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) to deal with the grant saga.
Dlamini has been explaining to Parliament’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) the process that has been followed to date to decide the payment of social grants from April 1.
Addressing members of Parliament (MPs) of Scopa, Dlamini has again moved to assure the public grants will be paid.
“People are raising their feelings but also lying by saying that the Sassa will not be able to pay grant beneficiaries on 1 April.”
The minister says they can change the service provider if need be.
“Making Grindrod the main service provider and the present service provider the minor was going to be a facelift.”
Dlamini says Sassa “underestimated” the work required to take over the payment of social grants.
She adds she doesn’t want to appear arrogant for not having attended last week’s meeting of the Scopa, but that her officials were capable of providing the necessary information on the department’s irregular expenditure.
But she says there’s a five-year plan for turning around the agency and that the Post Office will be involved in the future payment of grants.
But MPs were unhappy when Dlamini asked to leave to attend a Cabinet meeting before she could be questioned.
Dlamini then agreed to stay to answer a limited number of questions.