Sassa, Post Office to sign deal for grant payments

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SassaThe South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) is expected to sign a contract with the Post Office to take over the payment of social grants by next Thursday.

The deadline for finalising an agreement has been moved twice already.

Chairperson of Parliament’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) Themba Godi says that MPs were given the assurance during an oversight visit last week that this will happen by the end of the month.

Sassa is chasing a March court deadline to cancel its service agreement with Cash Paymaster Services (CPS).

On Wednesday, Sassa’s bid adjudication committee is due to decide which functions it will outsource to the Post Office.

It has previously told Parliament that it might also need to appoint a private contractor to do the work that the Post Office can’t.

Godi shared concerns: “Our main worry is that time is running out and we don’t want a manufactured crisis like we had last time.”

The Scopa chairperson says that the committee has been given the assurance from the Post Office that if a contract is signed with Sassa this month, it will be ready to take over from CPS by next year’s deadline.

“The fact that we said they must contract the Post Office must not make them think we are their friends. It’s just a matter of principle.”

Godi says that Scopa expects the Post Office to deliver a better service than CPS has.