The government has extended the special Covid-19 social relief of distress (SRD) grant until March 2024, but it comes at the expense of welfare grant recipients who will get below-inflation increases in 2023, according to the medium-term budget policy statement (MTBPS).

The R350 SRD grant was introduced in May 2020 to assist some of SA’s most vulnerable working-age people affected by the lockdown restrictions imposed in response to the coronavirus pandemic, and has been extended several times since then. Almost 2.3-million jobs were shed at the height of the pandemic, and the initial recovery in employment was largely erased by the July 2021 riots in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, with workers in low and semi-skilled jobs worst affected...

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