Sassa's Pearl Bhengu makes first Parliament appearance but MPs weren't buying it

The Acting CEO of the Social Development Agency made her first appearance before Parliament's Standing Committee on Public Accounts on Tuesday.

Scopa wants to know what progress is being made for the Post Office to take over the distribution of social grants.

In a little over seven months, Sassa will be forced to terminate its extended agreement with Cash Paymaster Services.

EWN reporter Lindsay Dentlinger reports that it was a baptism of fire for Bhengu on Tuesday morning.

Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini was not there but sent her apologies, having a clash of appointments.

Lindsay Dentlinger, EWN reporter

Bhengu outlined a plan to conclude discussions with the Post Office. Then any functions that would fall outside of the Post Office's ambit would be put out to tender.

She mapped the way forward through till January 2018 when Sassa would be in the best position to take over those grants, reports Dentlinger.

But MPs were not convinced by any of this. They felt that the officials were dragging their feet.

Lindsay Dentlinger, EWN reporter

Almost all the MPs present today, from both sides of the room, all political parties, said they had a sneaking suspicion CPS would be back in the new year.

Lindsay Dentlinger, EWN reporter

ANC MP Nyami Booi said he feels officials are hiding things from the committee and are not playing open cards, she adds.

Scopa has asked the Post Office to appear in early September and tell the committee what it can and cannot do with regard to grant distribution.

Listen to the report below:


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