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Department of Social Development unable to spend its budget on those in despair

February 16th, 2021

Ten months into the current financial year and the Eastern Cape Department of Social Development (DSD) has spent less than 14% of the funds meant to assist those people in distress in the province. While tens of thousands of people have had their livelihoods destroyed in this province by Covid-19 and the subsequently enforced lockdown, while children have been starving, this incompetent Department has been sitting on millions of rand …

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World Homeless Day reminder for EC government to tackle homelessness

October 9th, 2020

World Homeless Day [10 October 2020] is a fresh opportunity for the Eastern Cape Government to revisit the plight of the homeless and tackle some of the complex issues affecting these marginalised individuals. During the national lockdown, the Department of Social Development in the Eastern Cape opened nine temporary homeless shelters in five districts in the Eastern Cape. This presented the perfect opportunity to assist individuals with needs such as …

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EC NPOs go unpaid while DSD staff strike for six months

September 14th, 2020

More than 60% of Non-Profit Organisations in the Eastern Cape did not receive a single cent of their 2020/2021 subsidy payments from the Department of Social Development (DSD). In a very delayed response to a parliamentary question from the DA, Social Development MEC, Siphokazi Mani-Lusithi has now confirmed that of the 2661 department-funded NPOs in the province, by July, 1611 NPOs had still not received any subsidy payments for the …

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Social Development’s non-payment of subsidies continues to cripple NPOs

August 16th, 2020

Hundreds of Non-Profit Organisations (NPO) are battling to keep their doors open as private funding dries up under the onslaught of the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent enforced lockdown. Fundraising initiatives, many of which require face to face interactions, have all but ground to a halt, while corporate funding has also been severely affected, with funds being redirected to Covid-19 relief measures. In the face of these challenges, NPOs, which …

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Millions apparently skimmed off EC SASSA food parcels

April 22nd, 2020

The apparent inflated prices for food parcels distributed by SASSA in the Eastern Cape is extremely worrying, with an estimated R16-million or more skimmed off the top of the R48 million made available. This comes on top of allegations of political bias in the distribution of food parcels made available. A preliminary investigation, based on the standardised list of content per SASSA food parcel, has revealed that the Department of …

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Eastern Cape Social Development admits food parcels “very insufficient”

April 15th, 2020

The Eastern Cape Department of Social Development has admitted that the current budget available for food parcels for distribution to families in need due to the current Coronavirus outbreak in the province, is “very insufficient”. In response to a letter I wrote to the MEC for Social Development, Siphokazi Mani-Lusithi, last week, the Department has confirmed that the Provincial SASSA funding allocation for the 2020/2021 financial year, totalling R45,5 million, …

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Eastern Cape children must learn in the streets, even though funding is available for ECD centres

March 11th, 2020

Children are running around in the streets while the Department of Social Development is actively blocking people from starting up ECD centres, even though funding is available. ECD centres are critical for our learners entering the foundation phase. Without this their future opportunities are stunted. In response to a parliamentary question, , Social Development MEC Siphokazi Mani-Lusithi, said only 53 743 children of the 925 900 children in the province …

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Government land lies vacant in Nelson Mandela Bay

February 13th, 2020

While the national debate around expropriation without compensation continues, with the deadline for submissions extended to the end of February, government owned land in Nelson Mandela Bay stands vacant. During a recent Public Works portfolio oversight, 132 out of the 878 land parcels belonging to the Provincial Government in Nelson Mandela Bay were found to be vacant, with no concrete concept plans for usage. In Algoa Park 15,2 hectares of …

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Suspended Social Development officials paid R7 million to sit at home

November 5th, 2019

The Department of Social Development in the Eastern Cape has paid out over R7 million to 51 employees who were placed on paid leave over the past three years, pending the outcomes of investigations against them. These employees sat at home, drawing salaries, while hundreds of thousands of people, living in poverty, were deprived of the services these individuals were supposed to be providing. In response to a parliamentary question, …

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Less than 7% of children in the Eastern Cape have access to Early Childhood Development Centres

September 19th, 2019

There are close to 800 000 children between the ages of 0 and 4 in the Eastern Cape, but only 6.8% of these are provided with Early Childhood Development services by the Department of Social Development. MEC for Social Development, Siphokazi Mani Lusithi, has revealed that only 73 187 children currently receive an ECD subsidy through the 1 757-government funded ECD centres in the province. This needs to be urgently …

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