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South Africa: Efforts to End Poverty, Inequality Paying Off
Source: www.sanews.gov.za
Source Date: Wednesday, April 23, 2014
Focus: Electronic and Mobile Government
Country: South Africa
Created: Apr 23, 2014

The LBPL includes non-food items, but requires that individuals sacrifice food in order to obtain these, while individuals at the UBPL can purchase both adequate food and non-food items.

Addressing the media on Monday during a post-State of the Nation Address (SONA) Social Protection and Community Development Cluster briefing, Minister Dlamini said interventions such as increasing the number of grant beneficiaries, rolling out the food and nutrition security campaign and the War on Poverty campaign were bearing fruit.

Minister Dlamini said that today, the majority of South Africans, notably the most vulnerable, have access to basic services such as housing, water, sanitation, electricity and social security, which are government’s most effective poverty-alleviation interventions.

“This democratic government inherited a divided nation, with high poverty levels and inequitable distribution of income. In 1994, government started transforming policies and programmes from a racially based welfare system of apartheid, to the one that is now inclusive of all people.

“This deliberate agenda to transform the social protection framework has contributed to equitable access to basic services and community-based programmes. Looking at the significant political and socio-economic strides we have made since 1994, indeed we have a good story to tell,” Minister Dlamini said.

Expansion of social security coverage
Since 1994, the number of grant beneficiaries has increased from 2.7 million people to more than 16 million people by 2013. Eleven million of these are children, while more than 2.8 million are older persons.
Another achievement was the extension of the Child Support Grant until the age of 18.
In an attempt to ensure that poor and vulnerable households have access to food, government has rolled out the campaign on Food and Nutrition Security. Through these interventions, support has been given to small scale farmers to boost their productive capacity.

“As part of the War on Poverty campaign, the department has been able to create profiles of households in poverty and to make interventions at household and community levels.

“The provision of immediate poverty relief in the form of food parcels and soup kitchens or nutritional centres continues to provide relief to households,” Minister Dlamini said.
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