President Jacob Zuma’s appointment of himself to head the Cabinet’s interministerial committee on social grants has raised fears among officials in the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) that the process to find a long-term solution will again be taken out of their hands and go awry. Zuma’s office announced on Saturday that he would chair the committee, which he has expanded to include Telecommunications and Postal Services Minister Siyabonga Cwele, Communications Minister Faith Muthambi and Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba. Sassa staff who were initially elated by the Constitutional Court’s order and who spoke on condition of anonymity said on Sunday that Zuma’s presence would be likely to give support to Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini, whose strategy has been at odds with that of Sassa officials. Central to her strategy is a team of advisers appointed irregularly by the minister in 2013. The advisers, who operate in parallel to Sassa employees, are work...

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