More than 100 000 applicants did not qualify for the R350 Unemployment Grant

The first round of applications for the social relief grant of R350 a month for the unemployed has seen tens of thousands who do not qualify making applications.

This has prompted the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) to clarify the category of people who do qualify for the grant.

Sassa CEO Totsie Memela said on Monday that only people who were unemployed and not benefiting from any other government grant were eligible.

Of the 91,000 people who had applied on the WhatsApp line for the Covid-19 unemployment grant, 11,000 were found to be recipients of other social grants and were disqualified, said Memela.

Of the 250,000 who applied via e-mail, half were flagged and removed as they already received social grants.

From midday on Monday, Sassa launched a new application system to ensure that only those eligible would receive assistance and to stop chancers from defrauding the system.

Here are the criteria for the grant:

  • Any unemployed South African older than 18.
  • Must not be a recipient of other social grants, including old age, child support or disability grants.
  • Applicants should not be earning any sort of income.
  • Recipients of NSFAS funding do not qualify.
  • Prisoners and all other beneficiaries of state-funded welfare do not qualify.

Memela said those who qualify must be able to produce their SA identity document details in full as well as their gender and disability, if any.

The provision of physical address details, even without proof of residence, was also required.

Since the lockdown was announced, humanitarian organisation Scientology Volunteer Ministers has sanitised the equivalent of 658 football fields in Gauteng to protect South Africans from the pandemic. The group works tirelessly to decontaminate buildings and vehicles used by the public. To date the group has decontaminated over 3 million square metres.

Active bank account details were also required to enable Sassa to deposit the money once an application was approved.

Those without an active bank account can use their mobile phone numbers for cardless withdrawals at bank ATMs.

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