Issues with social grants a mix of human error and corruption – Minister Cox

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Issues with social grants a mix of human error and corruption – Minister Cox

A mix of human error and corruption.
That is how Donna Cox, Minister of Social Development and Family Services described the issues facing her ministry as it relates to the issuing of social grants in this country.

An Auditor General’s report unearth huge inconsistences at the Ministry, which is causing it to lose millions of dollars.

The loss is attributed in part to the fraudulent schemes of some employees, who are according to reports, are said to be receiving huge kickbacks and bribes to fast-track social grants applications that have been stuck in the system for months.

The report revealed that people as young as 27 are collecting senior citizen pensions, food card beneficiaries obtaining double payments, pertinent information for the processing of grants missing from the ministry’s database, and a payout of $886,350 to 61 beneficiaries whose national IDs did not correspond with their date of birth and four centenarians between the ages 114 to 135 appearing on the system.

While investigations are now underway, Minister Cox said measures have already been put in place to address the troubling issues, which she said also stems from human error, lack of due diligence, checks and balances and accountability on the ministry’s end.

“It is clear it is a mixture of human error and corruption. I am not here to make any excuses, many of these errors seem to be human errors associated with inputting the data, but there are others which seem to suggest that there may be illegal transactions within the system. I use the word corruption because there is corruption. There is an element of corruption. It is not just human error,” she said.

“This is very disturbing because they remind us of the gaps in the system that can be exploited by the criminal element and which we need to close as a matter of urgency.”