As per Johannesburg news, The Constitutional Court is all set to hear the application by Black Sash on Wednesday. The case relates to the petition that requires the court to exercise oversight on the process and find an altogether new social grants payments provider.
Bathabile Dlamini, the Social Development Minister, has so far not been able to provide details pertaining to the proposed extension with respect to the invalid grants distribution contractual agreement with the Cash Paymaster Services (CPS).
Black Sash has opined in its heads of argument, which was filed in the court on March 10 that the Social Development minister had demonstrably failed in exercising effective oversight in the case over Sassa, which happens to be constitutional obligation.
The court had questioned the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) and Dlamini on March 8 about the process related to the appointment of a service provider for paying social grants, right from the period beginning April 1. A deadline of Monday 16:00 had been sanctioned for providing answers.
According to latest news South Africa, both Sassa and Dlamini had failed to adhere to the deadline. They did not answer the court’s interrogations about the fact that Sassa knew that it would be tough to take up the grants payments, after its contractual agreement with CPS expires on March 31st.
On Tuesday, The Constitutional Court had issued another directive to Dlamini and Sassa seeking explanations as to why they could not meet the deadline with valid responses to its questions. It deserves mention at this stage that even Dlamini had missed this deadline on Tuesday by a few minutes.
In the year 2014, the court had made a ruling that the existing contract with CPS stood illegal and invalid. In its ruling, the court had suspended the order with respect to its invalidity till March 31 2017. This extension was given to allow Sassa and the department to bring in the essential administrative requirements for distributing grants. Thereafter, a task team of some Cabinet ministers had also rejected the proposed extension of the contract of Sassa with CPS.
This Sunday, a letter was released by the DA; it was dispatched by the Department of Social Development and confirmed that there existed no new contractual agreement between Sassa with the CPS or the department for distributing social grants from the period beginning April 1.