IS R370 GRANT INCREASED TO R700 TO 2024?Unfortunately recent weeks, there have been rumors circulating on social media that the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) will be increasing the COVID-19 Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grant from R350 to R700 in 2024. However, these claims are unsubstantiated and should be considered fake news, because the Government of South Africa Increased the R350 to R370 and not R700.

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Will the R370 Grant Be Increased to R700 in 2024?

Unfortunately, SASSA has not made any official announcements about raising the SRD grant to R700 this year, but they have recently increased the R350 grant to R370 back in April 2024. This figure appears to be pure speculation that originated on social media platforms. SASSA has warned citizens that scammers often spread misinformation about social grants to try and steal personal details from victims.

If the agency had approved an increase, it would have been formally communicated through SASSA’s official website and contact centers. Beneficiaries should be wary of any announcements made on other platforms, especially WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter. It’s best to contact SASSA directly to verify any information about grants before believing such claims.

ALSO READ: R350 Grant Extended, Is the SRD Grant Payment Increasing 2024?

Budget Constraints Limit Scope for Increase, IS R370 GRANT INCREASED TO R700 TO 2024?

The question then is, “Can South Africa even afford to double SRD grant payouts to R700 a month? With over 60% of the government’s budget spent on civil servant salaries, increases in social protection are limited. SASSA explored more sustainable funding models for the SRD grant, but ultimately extended it at the current R350 amount until March 2025.

This extension allows the Department of Social Development to further investigate policy changes and long-term financing solutions for income support. But in the short term, an increase to R700 is likely unfeasible given South Africa’s current economic climate and fiscal constraints.

SRD Grant Extended at R350 Until March 2025

In essence, rumors about the SRD grant rising to R700 this year are simply not true. SASSA has guaranteed payouts at the R350 level until the grant expires in March 2025. Beneficiaries who qualify can continue collecting this amount on a monthly basis.

However, beneficiaries who have missed payments in previous months may receive a cumulative amount of R700. For example, if you qualified for the SRD grant two months ago but have not been paid since, your next payout could amount to R350 x 2 months = R700. But the monthly grant itself remains fixed at R350.

Caution Against Fake News is Key

In these difficult economic times, the SRD grant is a lifeline for struggling South Africans. While an increase would certainly have helped relieve hardship, the government simply cannot fund more than R370 per person currently. Beneficiaries should beware of false claims about bigger payouts and rather focus on utilizing the existing grant amount as best they can.

The key takeaways are:

  • Rumors about the R350 SRD grant increasing to R700 in 2024 are fake. SASSA has not made any official statements approving this.
  • Beneficiaries should be wary of social media posts making claims about changes to social grants. Verify directly with SASSA.
  • Budget constraints around public sector wages mean the government cannot afford to increase the SRD grant at present.
  • The grant will continue paying R350 (R370 Now as of April 2024) per month until the March 2025 expiry date.

So in summary – no, the COVID-19 SRD grant has not and will not be increased to R700 in 2024. Beneficiaries should remain cautious of misinformation and keep tracking SASSA’s official channels for any updates.

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