SABC News, Skweyiya concerned about disability grant fraud, 29 January 2004

Zola Skweyiya, the social development minister, expressed serious concern today on reports that disability grant fraud was on the increase.

Skweyiya was recently handed preliminary reports from most of the provinces indicating that there were various irregularities concerning the issuing of disability grants. "This fraud is partly due to the inability to distinguish clearly between people who are disabled and people with chronic diseases. This escalation has been particularly acute in some of the provinces. The disability grant is not intended to provide relief from chronic diseases," he said.

Skweyiya urges stakeholders to act responsibly
He requested various sectors of society including provincial government departments, non-governmental organisations and faith based organisations to help curb the fraud. He urged all stakeholders to act responsibly and called on doctors to behave ethically.

Skweyiya said the government was committed to and had been implementing a comprehensive strategy to address the issue of HIV/Aids. "The government does not, however, provide a social grant specifically or exclusively for people who are HIV-positive."

In a letter written to provincial governments, Skweyiya urged them to correctly communicate to beneficiaries and stakeholders about disability grants to prevent any misunderstandings. "I would also like to urge you to ensure the... correct procedures and adhere to the specified criteria in the consideration of applications for and termination of temporary disability grants.

"The non-adherence to these prescripts has violated the rights and inflicted hardship on our beneficiaries in the past, and can lead to distortions in our social security system," the minister said.

"Government is working on implementing a comprehensive social security system for our people and it is incumbent upon all of us to support this work." - Sapa






Send mail to with questions or comments about this web site. Last modified: April 16, 2003