A major system glitch has disrupted South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) social grant payments at Post Office (SAPO) branches across the country.
In a statement issued on Thursday (3 November), SASSA and SAPO urged SASSA gold card holders to instead collect their grants at ATMs or retailers nationwide.
System glitch hits Post Office SASSA grant payments
“Withdrawals of social grants can be made at any retail outlets nationwide that provides the cashback functionality, [including] Shoprite, Checkers, Usave, Pick n Pay and Boxer,” the two institutions said.
“SASSA grants recipients can also use the SASSA gold cards to make purchases at any place that accepts bank card transactions, as the SASSA gold cards function fully within the national payments system similarly to any other bank card.”
Furthermore, the Post Office system glitch has also affected Postbank customers who wish to make over-the-counter transactions such as deposits and withdrawals.
Postbank interim CEO Lucas Ndala apologised to SASSA social grant beneficiaries and Postbank customers for the inconvenience caused.
‘Matter of urgency’
“Our IT teams have been tasked to resolve the technical challenges affecting the over-the-counter branch transactions as a matter of urgency,” Ndala said, adding that SAPO will issue a notification once the glitch is resolved.
SASSA’s acting CEO Abraham Mahlangu also said, “SASSA uses a fully functional bank card that is compatible with all access points within the National Payment System, thereby limiting the impact on clients when the system of one bank, merchant or pay point is down.
“We will continue to diversify these channels as much as possible to reduce the reliance on any one particular access point as we continue to pay the right social grant, to the right person, at the right time and place.”
The system glitch comes just a day after November payments started. Payments for older persons’ (pension) grants started on Wednesday, 2 November.
On Thursday, 3 November, beneficiaries of disability grants started collecting their payments, while all other normal grant beneficiaries will get their grants from Friday, 4 November.
“There is no need to rush to withdraw cash on the first day. Once the money is in the account, it will remain there until it is needed,” SASSA advises beneficiaries every month.