In the recent mid-term budget speech, it was announced that selected social grants would be increased. This is a welcomed relief for millions of individuals rely on social grants.
It has been reported that almost 50% of the South African population is currently benefiting from social grants. In April 2022, Finance Minister Godongwana had announced the increment of social grants.
The Old Age Grant, War Veterans grant and the Care Dependency grant by 5%, while the Foster Care grant was increased by 1.9%, and the Child Support Grant by 4.3%.
Godongwana revealed that the Department of Social Development is to receive the largest allocation of R58.6 billion over the medium term.
In the recent Medium Term Budget Policy Statement, the Finance Minister had reiterated that selected grants will be further increased in October 2022.
In a statement, the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) had shared:
The Old Person’s, War Veterans, Disability and Care Dependency increased by R90 in April 2022, and a further R10 in October 2022.
This comes after the Foster Care and Child Support grants had received a once increase of R20 in April 2022. This figures mentioned do not include individuals that are currently beneficiaries of the Social Relief of Distress (SRD) R350 gran, although the grant has been extended until the end of March 2024.
Government is currently considering options for a replacement for the SRD grant, however, a decision has not yet been taken on how it will be financed.
According to Gondogwana, given the large cost of extending the Social Relief of Distress (SRD) Grant, increases to other social grants in the next financial year will be slightly below inflation and other social welfare priorities might remain unaddressed.
The National Treasury has predicted that the number of social grant recipients is to increase by an average of 1.5%, which then translates to 19.2 million grant recipients in 2024/25.