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The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) had one job to do, but it has failed miserably at it. That is no doubt one of the many considerations that would have been weighing on the minds of Constitutional Court judges as they wrote up their judgment, due to be handed down on Friday. But who exactly is Sassa and what does it do? A look at the agency’s own records is revealing and worrying. It shows the recent social grants saga is not the first time Sassa has been in the firing line over its performance‚ particularly around financial management. But why has Sassa failed to deliver on its mandate‚ especially with such a highly skilled staff complement? Here are some interesting details about the multibillion-rand government agency‚ largely in its own words: • Sassa was set up in 2004‚ in terms of the South African Social Security Agency Act. • In terms of the act‚ the objects of the agency are to: (a) act‚ eventually‚ as the sole agent that will ensure the efficient and effecti...

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