It was today revealed that 19 Cash Paymaster Services ( CPS) officials have been identified in the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) Fraud Syndicate. The DA in the Western Cape welcomes the progress made by law enforcement agencies against members of a syndicate that have defrauded SASSA of millions of Rands.
In my capacity as Chairperson of the Standing Committee on Community Development in the Western Cape Provincial Legislature, I will write to the Minister of Social Development in the Western Cape, Albert Fritz, to inquire whether his department is conducting any investigations on SASSA officials in the Western Cape, and how many officials from the province have been found to be part of the syndicate. I will also inquire if the department has recovered, or has any plans to recover the funds that have been stolen by the syndicate.
It has emerged that the SASSA syndicate has been operating in a number of provinces, and that following a plea and sentencing agreement between the state and syndicate ring leader, Nosipho Majola, 19 Cash Paymaster Service (CPS) officials were identified to be part of the syndicate. CPS, a subsidiary of NET1 is responsible for disbursing SASSA grants to beneficiaries in the country. Of concern is that CPS will continue to disburse the funds until the contract expires at the end of March 2017. Following that, the Department will no longer outsource the disbursement of funds but will take on the responsibility themselves.
In a briefing to the Standing Committee on Community Development held on 31 May 2016, SASSA revealeed that they had lost R800 million to corrupt practices to date, and had only been able to recover R1,5 million of those funds. SASSA also continues to have issues around fraudulent deductions from beneficiaries accounts, and we hope that these recent developments will put an end to the corrupt practices.
We applaud the work done by law enforcement agencies as well as the courts, and we urge them to continue with the work they are doing. Majola and her associates have been stealing not only from the most vulnerable in our society, but also from the tax payers.
The DA in the Western Cape will continue our efforts to end the corrupt practices in the grant pay-outs until we are confident that it has been put to an end.
Lorraine Botha MPP
Western Cape Spokesperson on Community Development