Thousands of social grant recipients were forced to queue for hours on Monday, after they were given the week to withdraw their funds from SASSA. However, as pensioners flocked to pay-points, several glitches and a lack of policing turned the whole ordeal into a nightmare.
The three fatalities occured in Cape Town, Soweto and Hammersdale (KZN) respectively. According to SASSA minister Lindiwe Zulu – who hasn’t gone without causing controversy herself this month – one of the deceased passed away shortly after exiting the taxi which took her to the collection office:
“We know that the one person in Pimville, Soweto collapsed as she got out of the taxi, which means there might have been issues before she got there. We are sorry that, in some places, the money ran out. We are sure the work SASSA does now is to appreciate that this will be a lesson.”
Lindiwe Zulu, SASSA minister
Snaking queues and long waits were commonplace for our senior citizens yesterday – and similar scenes are expected throughout Tuesday, which is the second designated day our pensioners have to go and collect their social grants. A lack of social distancing and the inadvertent creation of large crowds means that many of our elderly compatriots are at greater risk of catching the coronavirus.