Activists with the #PayTheGrants campaign will march to Parliament and the Union Buildings on Thursday to demand that the COVID-19 Social Relief of Distress Grant be increased and extended.
During his State-of-the-Nation-Address in February, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the three-month extension of the grant of R350 which was due to end on January the 31st.
Now with the deadline looming once again, civil society groups want to ensure that the grant is extended again.
Nation Director of Black Sash, Lynette Maart, says the grant should be extended until the promised basic income grant kicks in.
“The pandemic has not gone away yet, food prices have escalated and so we’re concerned that many of the households don’t have enough money for food and we say make sure that the grant is extended until that basic income grant that government has promised will be in place.”
Unemployment in South Africa
Statistics South Africa says the country’s unemployment rate is now at 32.5% – the highest since the start of the quarterly labour force survey in 2008.
This as the country’s economy continues to take a beating from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The latest unemployment rate is a new record high as the 2020 third quarter 30.8% rate was also described as the highest since 2008.
The results of the latest survey, show that the number of unemployed South Africans increased by 701 000 to 7.2 million compared to the third quarter of 2020. This resulted in an increase of 1.0 million (up by 4.9%) in the number of people in the labour force.
Source: SABC News