Social development minister Bathabile Dlamini has told the Constitutional Court that the social grants crisis was effectively the fault of Sassa chief executive, Thokozani Magwaza. In an affidavit filed at the court on Friday evening, Dlamini reportedly said she should have demanded more accountability from "Sassa officials".
This is according to a report in Business Day on Monday. Dlamini was ordered by the court to file an affidavit by the end of Friday explaining why she should not be held personally responsible for the costs involved in the case. It was brought by Black Sash, which asked the court to retain its oversight role over the contract to pay social grants.
The Court found Dlamini liable, and said there was little the CEO could do without her direction.
Business Day reported that Dlamini had not filed her affidavit by the court's 4pm deadline on Monday. She reportedly said this was because the electronic copy of her affidavit had bounced back due to its size, and her attorneys would apply for condonation on Monday.
According to the newspaper, in her affidavit, Dlamini repeats the claims that while Sassa knew it would not be able to pay social grants itself in April 2016, Dlamini was only informed of this in October 2016.
Dlamini reportedly goes on to say the lack of information coming from Sassa was because of a change of leadership at the time.
"The effect of the change of leadership at Sassa, and the fact that Mr Magwaza failed to engage comprehensively with me during this critical time, in my view, contributed to delays in implementation of certain critical decisions..." Dlamini reportedly told the court.
Magwaza told Business Day he was consulting his legal team.