Business News: Presidency Said to Be Discussing Unrest Relief Fund, Could Be Up to R595

Business News: Presidency Said to Be Discussing Unrest Relief Fund, Could Be Up to R595

  • According to news reports, President Cyril Ramaphosa may announce the implementation of a relief grant to assist people impacted by the unrest
  • There is speculation that the government will bring back the R350 grants that were implemented during the coronavirus pandemic
  • There are still discussions over whether or not this new grant should be temporary or should form part of the basic income grant

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The South African government, as well as businesses and labour leaders, are currently in discussions of a relief grant for people impacted by the violent protest that took place in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng last week.

According to BusinessLIVE, President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to reintroduce the social relief grant in the coming days.

Relief grant, R350, R595, South African Government, Unrest, KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng
South Africans impacted by the unrest that took place in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal may get a relief grant of up to R595. Image: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg
Source: Getty Images

While both labour and business leaders recognise the need for assistance in the aftermath of the riots, there is disagreement about whether the social relief grant should be temporary or the start of a basic income grant, according to News24.

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Vice president of Business Unity South Africa Martin Kingston stated that the grant needed to be within our constrained fiscal environment as well as affordable.

Speculation is that the R350 relief that was implemented during the coronavirus pandemic would be reinstated. Matthew Parks, who is the parliamentary coordinator for Cosatu, stated they were confident that it would happen soon.

"It needs to be reinstated across South Africa. It is a basic income grant in essence. It can be improved, enhanced, gremlins addressed once it’s implemented,” said Parks.

He estimated that reinstating the grant at that level would cost R24 billion per year.

The presidency, the Treasury, and the Department of Social Welfare are said to be in discussions about how much money will be paid out as the relief fund. They are also discussing how long they will continue the relief fund programme as well as who will qualify as recipients of the grant.

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Speculation is the relief grant will be anywhere between R350 and R595.

Basic income grant being 'seriously' considered by Government

Briefly News previously reported that President Cyril Ramaphosa recently stated that the basic income grant is seriously being considered as there are proposals that Government pays cash stipends out to address the high levels of poverty and inequality that fuelled the unrest. Ramaphosa said this in an online lecture on Sunday.

He added that it is being discussed within the African National Congress and at Government level. Treasury is discussing the aid that is taking place and the presidency is considering a separate support package for businesses and individuals.

The support packages are for those impacted by the issues that have been plaguing the country over the past week where at least 212 deaths have been reported.

A report by BusinessTech stated that during the Mandela Day memorial lecture on Sunday, 18 July, Ramaphosa stated that the grant would help people know that 'the government cared' for them.

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Source: Briefly News

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