Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu has confirmed that a ‘discussion document’ for the financing of a Basic Income Grant (BIG) in South Africa has been created – with the intention of these payments replacing R350 handouts. Millions of recipients are now without a financial support network, after the SRD grants lapsed last month.

Here’s what will replace the R350 grant

During a Budget Briefing for the department, Zulu made it clear that the Basic Income Grant is something she is fighting to push through. The policy remains popular within the ANC, but finding the funds for such a project remains a daunting task. However, with proposals firmly in the pipeline, there is hope that the extra cash required can be found somewhere.

“The Department of Social Development has developed a Basic Income Grant (BIG) discussion document that we have started consultations on. These consultations are targeted at developing the BIG financing mechanism for the unemployed population group that is aged 19-59 years.”

“The rapid assessment study that we initiated on the implementation and utilisation of the CoVID-19 SRD grant monies is nearing completion, and its findings and recommendations will be shared with the Honorable Members. We expect that these will be relevant for the discussions that we are having on the Basic Income Grant.”

Who will qualify for a Basic Income Grant?

There will be terms and conditions that need following, however. Although the Basic Income Grant isn’t a closed shop, it also won’t be a free-for-all. Only certain claimants will receive payments from the BIG, defined under these criteria:

  • You have to be an unemployed citizen of South Africa.
  • Those aged between 19 and 59 will be covered by the Basic Income Grant.
  • You cannot receive any other social grants.
  • The conditions are likely to mirror those of the R350 grant, which was introduced in April 2020.
  • Therefore, upwards of six million South Africans could claim from the BIG fund.

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Presh JM Reporter

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