President Cyril Ramaphosa has expressed his sadness at the passing yesterday, 30 March 2020, of three elderly social grant recipients in the vicinity of three different payment centres around the country.
In the Western Cape, a 74-year-old male, who had received benefits at Vangate Mall, Athlone, died on Jakes Gerwel Drive while on his way home.
In KwaZulu-Natal, a 63-year-old woman collapsed in queue at the Hammarsdale Post Office.
In Gauteng, a 66-year-old woman collapsed shortly after disembarking from a taxi near the Pimville Post Office where she was due to collect her grant.
The South African Social Security Agency made payments earlier than usual this month to help beneficiaries cope with the impact of the coronavirus COVID-19 national lockdown.
President Ramaphosa has offered his sincere condolences to the families of the elderly persons who passed away.
The President said: “It is very sad that we have lost three senior members of our community on a day that government provided services earlier than usual for the benefit of the most vulnerable people in our society.
“This is a difficult time for all South Africans and the loss of these three elderly persons reminds all of us to take the best care we can of vulnerable people around us.”
The Department of Social Development, together with the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA), will immediately assist the families of the victims and provide material and psychosocial support through the Social Relief of Distress (SRD) Programme.
The Department of Social Development has also expressed appreciation for the offer by ASSUPOL to assist with funeral arrangements for the deceased.
President Ramaphosa stresses that beneficiaries need not immediately rush to banks, retailers or cash points to collect their grants as payments will remain in beneficiaries’ accounts.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of South African Government.