Social Development short changing SA’s vulnerable by R1 billion

sa flagAccording to its 2012/13 annual report, the Department of Social Development failed to spend R989 million of the Social Assistance budget.

It is imperative that all funding allocated for crucial support to our most vulnerable citizens such as children, the disabled, and elderly is fully spent.

According to the Department of Social Development 2012/13 Annual Report, under-expenditure was recorded in the following programmes:

• R425 million of the Disability grant allocation (27 887 potential grants);
• R222 million of the Child Support grant allocation (61 666 potential grants); and
• R11 million of the Old Age grant allocation (721 potential grants).

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With increasing levels of poverty, it is unfathomable that the Department of Social Development would not be able to spend its budget.

Afrobarometer’s Lived Poverty Index (LPI) suggests that the need of state social assistance in South Africa is rising.

Out of 16 countries surveyed, South Africa is one of only five with increasing levels of lived poverty and almost 60% of South Africans surveyed have experienced income shortages regularly between 2011 and 2013.