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South Africa

R350 grant not enough, beneficiaries shouldn’t have to pay for electricity, water | Muhabarishaji News

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The leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) Julius Malema attended a community meeting in Sebokeng, Gauteng, and reportedly criticised the fact that beneficiaries of the Social Relief of Distress Grant have to pay for basic services such as water and electricity.

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According to TimesLive, Malema who previously called for the R350 SRD grant to be increased and made permanent made similar statements at the community meeting. He said the R350 grant is not enough to sustain the people who need it and that the government should be paying the poor more but also acknowledged that social grants are not a permanent solution.

“Being a Sassa beneficiary means that you are poor. As the government, why then do you expect money from the poor?” questioned Malema. He went on to say that SASSA beneficiaries should not be expected to pay for water and electricity and suggested that municipalities should have a database of grant recipients.

“That way, you will be able to support your children,” said Malema. “Water and electricity are expensive.”

The SRD grant was reintroduced by the government in the wake of the unrest that unfolded in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng. The current round of grants is expected to last until March 2022.

When he addressed the nation on Sunday, 12 September, President Cyril Ramaphosa revealed that SASSA has received more than 13 million applications for the SRD grant since it reopened in August and just over 3.7 million applications have been declined.

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