For the past five months since the payments of the temporal Social Relief Of distress (SRD) grant was introduced, payment process has generally been good but with some irregularities that have to be addressed urgently
For instance, in the early stages of of the program, some applicants were declined for no reason and later sassa made changes and stated reasons for the decline.
Some of these declined applicants have genuine reasons to appeal to overturn that decision. Meanwhile SASSA said they have created a dedicated email account that those who feels that they have been unduly rejected can write to appeal.
For instance, an applicant who applied for NSFAS bursaries but could not be funded for whatever reason is declined with nsfas as the cause of the decline. Such applicants are left dejected and desperate and does not know what to do.
But the unfortunate news have been since May, June and July all those who appealed have not even heard anything from sassa.
It was later revealed that, sassa appeal system is yet to be finalized and start functioning.
A report chanced upon indicates that SASSA support system has been receiving a whooping number of 300,000 (300k) emails backlog. And the sad thing is that, they are not to be attended to soon. In addition, it is receiving about 1000 emails daily.
Apart from this backlog of emails, the report also indicated that SASSA is receiving on average 40,000 phone calls per day.
Most applicants have complained several times that they have real difficulty reaching SASSA on their Hotline 0800601011 for queries and assistance.
One last thing the report also made known was the fact that, SASSA has only 26 support personnel at the support centre which makes woefully inadequate to cater for the greater needs of the desperate applicants.
It must be recalled that, sassa is already dealing with regular sassa grants payments on monthly basis and has to take care of this additional responsibility.
What SASSA intend to do, according to the report, is to outsource for a third party service provider to attend to these numerous challenges.
In view of these events, it is our hope that things will ease up so that these distressed applicants can finally some peace.