The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) has confirmed that the cash-send option for Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grants is still available as a payment option.
This option is for approved SRD grant applicants who don't have bank accounts. Clients will need a cellphone number registered in their name in order to receive the R350 grant through cash send.
Alternatively, SRD grant recipients can choose to have their grant paid directly into their bank account or collect it at selected retail stores including Pick n Pay, Boxer, Shoprite, Checkers and USave stores.
In the first iteration of the SRD grant, Sassa entered into contracts with banks to provide the cash send/mobile money transfer payment option to successful grant applicants. However, these contracts expired and Sassa was required to enter into new agreements
The SRD grant has been extended on several occasions. However, some of the services related to the grant expired as the grant was only meant to be in place for a fixed period.
Some of the contracts for the distribution of the grant had expired. This meant that the Cash Send payment option was delayed as Sassa worked to finalise contracts that would result in the payment option being reintroduced.
The Cash Send payment method was also mooted as an alternative payment option for government grant recipients. This is as Sassa aims to develop a new payment infrastructure to improve grant distribution in the country.
In response to a parliamentary question, the Department of Social Development said that the cash-send option is only available to SRD grant beneficiaries.