An answer to a parliamentary question from the Democratic Alliance has revealed that 31 % of South Africans rely on grants every month to make ends meet.
The Minister of Social Development, Lindiwe Zulu, divulged that more than 18 million people receive some form of grant payment, a massive increase from the mere 7 % that received grants in 1996 – when this data was first recorded on a national level.
For many households grant payments have replaced salaries as their source of income.
“While the DA supports the payment of grants, the creation of jobs is of the utmost importance. South Africans need jobs, not just for financial stability but also for the dignity it provides, and the government has utterly failed to stimulate job growth,” said Bridget Masango, the DA Shadow Minister of Social Development.
“While a natural inclination would be to lay all blame at the feet of the Covid-19 pandemic, the truth is that the first sharp increase to 20% of the population receiving grants happened in the 2004/05 financial year and has been steadily rising ever since, with 30% of South Africans having to rely on grants since 2010/11.
The only worthwhile conclusion that can be drawn is that South Africans are increasingly going into poverty due to a failing ANC government and its policies,” added Masango.