The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) has clarified who qualifies for food parcels during the national lockdown to dispel fake news doing the rounds.
Sassa says in a statement that food parcels are provided as temporary relief for those who cannot meet their family’s most basic needs.
Those who qualify are people whose disability grants lapsed in March, people who have been hit by natural disasters, and if a breadwinner has passed away in the past year also qualify.
The food parcels will also be provided to families where everyone is unemployed, child-headed households and people who cannot work for 6 months for medical reasons.
Corruption in the distribution of food parcels
Gauteng Premier David Makhura has condemned alleged corruption in the distribution of food parcels to the needy during the lockdown period. Makhura was reacting to the allegations by South African Civic Organisation (Sanco) in Tshwane that there is discrimination in the distribution of food parcels and that they are not reaching the intended beneficiaries.
Over 400 food hampers are distributed daily.
Makhura briefed the media on Tuesday during his visit to a COVID-19 food bank storage in Watloo, east of Pretoria.
“This food bank must only distribute to people vetted and verified because they must go only to those who are needy. Every family that needs food must be assisted. We are also going to report to the command centre that we are going to need more food as more families continue to come forward,” says Makhura.
In the video below, Makhura says more people are now in dire need of food supplies as a result of the lockdown.
Food parcels theft allegations
Economic Freedom Fighters leader in Mpumalanga Collen Sedibe has laid charges of fraud and corruption in the Nelspruit police station, against an African National Congress Member of the Provincial Legislature and a Regional Director at the Social Development Department.
Sedibe alleges that the two are involved in the stealing of food parcels meant to provide relief to the poor during the lockdown.
He alleges that the food parcels were seen delivered at the house of the Member of the Legislature at night in Thekwane South near Mbombela.
He has urged law enforcement agencies to leave no stone unturned in probing the matter.
” We warned them that this pandemic must not be used for political point scoring and for corruption, it must be used to assist the need during this difficult time. We find it wrong as the EFF that a member of Parliament received the food knowing that she is not allowed to receive the food because there are volunteers, there is a centre where it must be delivered.”