‘Zulu feels sorry for struggling SA’ers, hungry children’

Henry

It has recently come to light that Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu and her Acting Director General, Linton Mchunu, squandered a total of R100 million intended to assist survivors of Gender Based Violence and Femicide (GBVF).

This comes barely a week after the National Anti-Corruption Hotline (NACH) commissioner, Anele Gxoyiya, revealed that 63.6% of 2022/’23 complaints in the second quarter related to incidents of alleged fraud regarding the South African Agency for Social Security (Sassa).

Bridget Masango, the DA’s spokesperson on social development, says that despite the DA’s first questioning about Zulu’s failure to have her department funds from the criminal asset recovery account (CARA) administered in 2020, she and Mchunu have the administration of the funds – what is meant was transferred for GBVF victim programs – to the National Development Agency (NDA) at a cost of R6 million, who in turn then distributed the money to civil society organizations (CSOs) that should never have been considered for this funding.

“The CSOs did not have addresses and had not been functional for more than a year at the time of receiving the funds.

“Zulu and Mchunu also saw fit to transfer the funds behind the national Treasury’s back,” says Masango.

She believes it is therefore no surprise that GBVF victims received little to no benefit from the R100 million, which was specifically intended for them.

“It is also not a shock that the NDA and the Department of Social Development have failed to monitor the CSOs. The auditors noted the withdrawal of large sums of money from CSO accounts just after the funds were deposited, but no account was kept of what they were used for.”

Masango says it is now clearer than ever that Zulu sees the Department of Social Development – meant to serve the poorest and most vulnerable in our society – as nothing more than her personal piggy bank.

“It is clear that she does not even care a little about struggling South Africans, hungry children or GBVF survivors. It is also clear that she will do everything in her power to sideline those in her department who are trying to fulfill his mandate.

The DA has called several times for Minister Zulu to be fired.

“We no longer expect pres. Cyril Ramaphosa will not do the right thing,” said Masango. “We do hope that South Africans will stand up for themselves and kick out the ANC government as a whole in 2024.”