The voter registration weekend was not without drama as ANC election posters about the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) ruffled feathers and sparked debate on whether the party should take credit for social grant payouts.
The ANC posted on social media an electioneering poster with the caption: “The ANC remains committed to safeguarding the wellbeing of our people‚ especially through impactful social grants. Together we build a foundation of support‚ ensuring no-one is left behind. Visit your local voting station.”
Many people on social media lambasted the party‚ saying the poster gave the impression that grants were paid from ANC money while they are financed by taxes. Civil rights group Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) said the poster was “luring voters”.
“Pure unfiltered electioneering‚ luring voters by pretending that Sassa grants get paid courtesy of [the] ANC. The truth is all South Africans contribute to the taxes that [pay the grants]. It’s not the ANC’s generous doing‚” the organisation posted on social media.
Some people defended the ANC‚ saying though social grant payouts were a provision in the constitution the party should be given credit for implementation.
ANC spokesperson Mahlengi Bhengu-Motsiri said: “Protecting the most vulnerable and the poor via comprehensive social security is a vital success by the ANC-led government. Also‚ scientific facts are stubborn. Look up the 2022 Census Report. You call it welfarism‚ we call it a developmental state.”
Section 27 of the constitution stipulates the government should provide social security support. It reads: “Everyone has the right to have access to — (c) social security‚ including if they are unable to support themselves and their dependents‚ appropriate social assistance.”
Earlier this year President Cyril Ramaphosa said 18-million people received grants‚ but the social development department had a different figure. According to the department’s report at the end of August‚ there were 11‚876‚076 people receiving grants. The number increases yearly.
Source: ARENA Holdings.