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To: Sisisi Tolashe, Minister of Social Development

Tell SASSA to process cellphone number changes for SRD grant recipients

I demand that the Minister of Social development and SASSA help recipients like myself who are unfairly blocked from getting our grants due to numbers that do not exist anymore.

1. SASSA uses applicants' identity number (ID) and a cellphone number to register and disburse the monthly SRD grants which they claim to verify on a monthly basis.

2. These network providers (MTN, Vodacom, CellC and Telkom Mobile) deactivate certain numbers AT WILL without recourse for subscribers who would have been using the numbers in the SRD administrative process.

3. When a cellphone number has been reallocated to a different user, the SRD grant recipient is blocked from accessing the grant since authorisation for making a withdrawal is done via the registered cellphone number on the SASSA database.

4. The instructions detailed on the SRD website to change cellphone numbers, always return a "FAILED" message even if all required details for effecting the change have been input correctly. see:

5. When the call centre is contacted, both via the toll free number 0800 60 10 11 and [email protected], it is advised that 'the use of the link above has been discontinued due to several incidents of fraud' even though it is still listed on the website.

6. The call centre agent takes down all the relevant details to effect the necessary changes BUT advises that the query will be ESCALATED to another SASSA section or department which will then send a link portal to the new cellphone number for a "biometric" verification to be performed but there is no turnaround time offered.

7. My case in particular is that, my enquiry was escalated 4 months ago, first on 04/08/2023, then followed up on 04/09/2023 & 13/09/2023, but nothing has come forth for a grant that I am supposed to access on a monthly basis.

8. My online SRD profile indicates 1. the grant approval, 2. filing and 3. dates of availability though, but without the change of the cellphone number, I am stuck, I don't know until when.

The response from the call centre reads: "Kindly be advised that your query has been escalated for further assistance. An SMS will be sent to your cellphone number for the verification process. The SMS will contain a link portal. Kindly click on the prompt and follow the instructions. You will have to take a photo with a clear background for the process verification process. Please be advised that there is no turnaround. We urge you to be patient"

Why is this important?

It is a constitutional right for social grant recipients to receive social grants they are eligible for. All citizens have a right to a fair administrative process by SASSA. The R350 grant is crucial for unemployed and it gets worse when not paid for months because SASSA has not changed your cellphone number after informing the department.

How it will be delivered

The signatures will be delivered to the decision-maker


2024-04-19 11:25:33 +0200

ICASA has amended the numbering plan regulations to include that "in 30 days if a cellphone number has not been active on a particular network, before it is recycled the user has to be informed before they disconnect then the user is given another additional 30 days to either recharge or make a call" please read more on the updated regulations that were gazetted here:

2024-02-24 13:02:31 +0200

100 signatures reached

2024-02-24 00:37:56 +0200

50 signatures reached

2024-02-23 20:52:16 +0200

25 signatures reached

2024-02-22 22:30:00 +0200

10 signatures reached