The decision by the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa), under the authority of Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini, not to approach the Constitutional Court with a request to extend the contract of Cash Paymaster Services (CPS), requiring the private company to continue handling social grant payments, is difficult to understand. Absent a plausible explanation, it will create the suspicion that the decision was taken solely to benefit a private company (CPS) to enhance its profits.

The Constitutional Court noted in 2013 when it declared invalid the awarding of the tender to CPS to provide services for payment of social grants, that “for many people in this country the payment of social grants by the state provides the only hope of ever living in the material conditions that the Constitution’s values of dignity, freedom and equality promise”. (more…)

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Quote of the week

Out of the mire, a banal but chilling proposition starts to emerge – that we decide on the innocence or guilt of a plaintiff according to whether we like them or not. Legality, our conviction in the rights and wrongs of the matter, trails our desires (whether the reverse would be preferable is not clear). Whenever I read biographies of Plath, I always have the suspicion that someone or other is being criminalised simply for being who they were.

Jacqueline Rose
London Review of Books
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