Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini and a few hand-picked advisers have emerged as the clique that constructed the illegal new contract with Cash Paymaster Services (CPS), excluding officials of the department and the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) from the process. Their exposure helps shed light on the bizarre goings on in the department and the agency that culminated in the director-general Zane Dangor resigning and two Sassa CEOs taking ill. It also appears to suggest that the delay in solving the crisis in grant distribution was engineered by a group of consultants acting at Dlamini’s behest. It is said the advisers were appointed irregularly after first serving on an advisory panel to the minister in 2013. They advised on the establishment of the work streams and were later appointed to head these. There were three work streams: "information and business management"; "banking services and project management, legislative and policy requirements managemen...

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