Over 100 000 unemployed South Africans in May received R350 from the special COVID-19 Social Relief of Distress, SASSA has confirmed.

The 116 867, said the South African Social Services Agency (SASSA) on Monday in a statement, were part of 13 million applications received.

However, only 6.3 million of these were valid, complete applications.

SASSA spokesperson Paseka Letsatsi said, to date, over 3.5 million applicants had been checked to confirm if they are either active SASSA grant recipients, were on the UIF database or receive a NSFAS stipend.

“We have received approximately 13 million enquiries/applications about the temporary special COVID-19 SRD grant as at Monday, 25 May 2020.

“About 6.3 million of these were valid, complete applications. The rest were either duplicate applications, incomplete, had inconsistent data, or were just pure enquiries,” said Busisiwe Memela, SASSA Chief Executive.

The agency said a further 1.2 million clients were being finalised through verification by SARS to confirm if they have an income.

“A total of 666 381 clients have been approved and SASSA is awaiting banking details information. Over 1 597 127 have been disapproved, since the applicants have some or other means of income,” read the statement.

The agency urged applicants to respond immediately to the SMS received from SASSA and provide their banking details through the secure link.

“This will enable SASSA to ensure payments are processed without delay to all eligible applicants. Citizens are reminded that there is no cut-off date for applications for this special relief grant. Anyone who meets the qualifying criteria should lodge an application without delay,” said Letsatsi.

Beneficiaries can also check the status of their applications online on https://srd.sassa.gov.za/sc19/status or by adding GovChat whatsapp on 082 046 8553, open chat, type “Status” and Send.

Meanwhile, SASSA said it has successfully implemented the increase of the child support grant by R300 per child and an additional R500 per caregiver from June to October 2020. All other existing grants were increased by R250 per month from May to October 2020 (except for Grant in Aid).

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