Citizen Reporter
Reporter
2 minute read
14 Mar 2017
5:07 pm

Bathabile Dlamini: social grants ‘crisis’ just propaganda by opposition

Citizen Reporter

The minister faced a barrage of criticism from opposition parties.

The ANC Women's League insisted that it's president Bathabile Dlamini be included in President Ramaphosa's new Cabinet.

Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini on Tuesday went on the offensive in Parliament, denying there is an impending social grant crisis.

But she faced a barrage of criticism from opposition parties.

Firing the opening salvo in the debate on the matter, Inkatha Freedom Party MP Liezl van der Merwe said a “dodgy contract” was at the heart of the crisis accompanied by a social development department guilty of “maladminisration, gross negligence and incompetency”.

“At the heart of this crisis is a dodgy tender, a rogue minister and a ruling party that no longer cares for the poor,” charged Van der Merwe.

Dlamini was the “culprit” responsible for the “deficiency of accountability”, she added, before targeting Parliament’s presiding officers for allowing the minister to “duck and dive accountability”.

Referring to the 2014 court judgment, which found the contract between the South Africa Social Security Agency and Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) invalid, van der Merwe said little to nothing had been done in the three years since then, which eventually led to the prospect that an illegal contract would have to be extended.

“Today we need Minister Dlamini to take personal and political responsibility for this crisis by vacating her office, failing which President [Jacob] Zuma must act.”

However, this was unlikely as Dlamini and Zuma were “besties”, she added.

IFP MP Mkhuleko Hlengwa was even more scathing: “She is a threat to social security in this country,” he said.

As Dlamini took to the podium, dressed in ANC colours and loudly supported by ANC backbenchers and members of the ANC Women’s League, the minister “set the record straight”.

“I would like to reiterate the assurance of President Jacob Zuma that there is no crisis at Sassa. We have without fail been paying the right grant to the right person at the right time and place since Sassa’s establishment 10 years ago. We will continue doing so without fail come April first and beyond.”

She blamed the confusion around the payment of grants on “prophets of doom”, in an apparent reference to opposition parties.

What they had to say:
We must stop this madness that is engulfing our nation. – Andries Plouamma, Agang

It’s a human rights travesty which could have been pre-empted.  –  Mandla Galo, African Independent Congress

What unfolded since the Constitutional Court ruled the Cash Paymaster Services contract invalid is an unbelievable example of recklessness. – Bridget Masango, DA

It is a sick government which misleads and puts the livelihoods of millions of poor South Africans at risk. – Ntombovuyo Mente, EFF

Dlamini should be found in contempt of court by South Africa’s highest court for not abiding by its directives.  –  Corne Mulder, Freedom Front Plus

What led to the crisis was a well-orchestrated plot by people beholden to CPS.  – Themba Godi, African People’s Convention

ALSO READ:

ConCourt issues new directive to Dlamini, Sassa

– African News Agency

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