Welfare organisations in the Eastern Cape are faced with a financial crisis. My office has been inundated with complaints from across the province from Non Profit Organisations (NPO’s) who have not received their subsidies from April and May from the provincial Department of Social Development.
These organisations have received no communication from the department and their queries are being ignored. The matter is being confused further by reports of a “technical glitch” on the one hand and on the other that the master list of beneficiaries must first be authorised and signed off by the Head of the Department.
I have written to the MEC for Social Development, Pemmy Majodina, to bring this situation to her attention and to request her urgent intervention.
These organisations deliver an extremely valuable service to our communities. In many cases they are the only hope for destitute people.
The McKaiser Old Age Home in Grahamstown, for instance, has been unable to pay its staff and service providers for May. I have also been on contact with the Masigcinane- Imetele-, Thembokuhle- and AB Educare Centres in Middelburg, confirming that they had also not received any payment from the department.
We cannot allow budget issues and system problems to hamper service delivery to the most needy in our communities. The department cannot be allowed to simply ignore queries from NPOs, especially regarding desperately needed funding.