The Constitutional Court has extended the contract of Cash Paymaster Services to continue distributing social grants past the end of March.
Reading the judgment, Justice Johan Coenraad Froneman said that both the social security agency and CPS were under Constitutional obligation to pay social grants from April 1 until another agency could do so.
The contract must continue under the same terms and conditions as the current contract, and at the end of the year CPS must make its financial information available.
Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini and the South African Social Security Agency must submit reports every three months on the progress of the new contract.
Political parties have both vented their frustration and appreciation of the court’s ruling on social media.
The United Democratic Movement’s Bantu Holomisa said that Zuma and his Cabinet had successfully blackmailed the Constitutional Court to endorse the “ANC’s cash cow company, CPS”.
The Democratic Alliance’s John Steenhuisen tweeted that the Constitutional court ruling overseeing Sassa is doing what a functioning and effective Parliament should have been doing for the last year.
The Freedom Front Plus’s leader, Corné Mulder? tweeted that: “The court is setting up its heavy artillery and aim before executive, Sassa and minister will be blasted to smithereens.”
Constitutional Court expert Pierre de Vos? commented that the Constitutional Court ordered that the Court take over supervision of the implementation of new grants process because there was no trust in the social security agency and the minister
Earlier this week, CPS was coy about revealing to the Constitutional Court just how much it expected to gain from the new deal.
Speaking on behalf of CPS, Alfred Cockrell told the Constitutional Court that there was no commercial value in continuing a deal with Sassa beyond March 31, but said CPS would continue to render its services until a suitable replacement was found.
This could only be done if a contract was signed, allowing CPS to receive the R11 billion it needed each month to distribute the grants to more than 17 million beneficiaries, he said.