On 3 February 2017, the DA wrote to President Jacob Zuma, asking him to issue a proclamation transferring the lead role in negotiations and processing the appointment of a new service provider from the careless Minister of Social Development to the Treasury. However, the DA has not even received an acknowledgement of receipt from the President, which we view as an act of gross negligence.
The lack of communication from the Presidency on this matter is utterly concerning, especially considering that the 1 April deadline is quickly approaching.
17 Million poor and vulnerable South Africans depend on social grants every month, and the lack of communication from the President as well as the Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini, proves that the ANC only care about South Africans when they need their votes.
The DA is of the firm belief that SASSA and the Minister manufactured this crisis so that they would have no option but to extend the invalid contract with CPS. However, we have no information on how much this would cost and indications are that CPS will demand R1.3 billion to extend.
That the Minister has allowed for the situation to reach this dire point is unacceptable. Clearly, she has been too busy campaigning. The DA accordingly called on the President to fire the absent Minister with immediate effect. This plea, for the sake of millions.
We cannot allow that contractors hold our government and our people at ransom by requesting ridiculous amounts of money to provide services.
The DA will continue to fight to ensure that the 17 million South Africans who rely on social grants are not left in the dark on this issue and that the new social grants contract is negotiated in a transparent manner.
Bridget Masango MP
DA Shadow Minister of Social Developement