The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) has paid about 750,000 claims with more expected soon.
This follows months of appeals, verification and reconsideration processes pertaining to the R350 COVID-19 Social Relief of Distress Grant (SRD) applications.
The payments have been progressive in clearing the backlog due to reconsideration appeals between August and November 2021.
The SRD Grant was extended for 12 months in February but, in a statement, SASSA said: “Before the extension could be implemented, the legislative framework had to be changed, given the lifting of the COVID-19 National State of Disaster.”
The agency added that the conditions addressed concerns of staying within a R44 billion budget – without excluding those in need.
SASSA said this required an extensive procurement and systems development process, including partnering with some of the main banks in South Africa.
Assessments for new applications have also begun, the agency noted.