City of Joburg makes efforts to alleviate poverty

The City of Johannesburg’s Expanded Social Package (ESP) pragramme, a social benefits package provided to vulnerable individuals to ensure they have access to basic services, has increased its reach.
In a press statement the MMC for Health and Social Development, Dr Mpho Phalatse, said the ESP poverty index income bands increased by 4.9 % based on figures made available by Statistics South Africa for August 2018. The said revision was effected from 01 November 2018.
As of this date, individuals that qualify to register must have an income not exceeding R5 852.28 per month.
To qualify for the ESP, applicants must be a South African Citizen and reside within the City’s boundaries.
• Individuals must provide proof of income, SASSA Card and three (3) months latest bank statements of all bank accounts. In the absence of these, a sworn affidavit must be produced, confirming no bank
account or any other source of
• Identity document;
• City of Joburg Rates & Taxes
• City Power Pre-Paid Meter
Account Number;
• Eskom Pre-Paid Electricity
Account Number, Conventional Account Number; and
• Johannesburg Water Account/Pre-Paid Account Number (ITU number on the receipt).
The benefits include water, electricity and other rebates such as rates, sewer and refuse for property owners who as a pensioner, the property value does not exceed R2 5 000 000 and as a working-age adult, the property value does not exceed R500 000. Phalatse said individuals will further qualify for referral for programmes and services offered by City departments like Skills Development, Social Service Interventions, Food Resilience, Youth Programmes, and Intervention Programmes for the Homeless and so forth. The ESP rebate is applied for a period not exceeding six months and thereafter requires renewal for continued benefits. Fourteen new ESP centres were opened, expanding the ESP footprint into clinics, as well as multi-purpose and skills centres. An additional 20 centres have been identified across the city to open by end November 2018. Phalatse said that she is extremely concerned about the lack of interest in the city’s ESP offering in some parts of the city.
“This in spite of the massive investment in outreach initiatives by the city to ensure that the poorest of the poor are not excluded from benefitting,” she said.
“I would like to urge all residents who believe they qualify to come through with the relevant documentation and register. This could be your first step out of your current financial situation. As a caring city, we will continue to strengthen our commitment towards uplifting the lives of those who have been marginalized,” she said.

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