Over R20bn in UIF funds paid out in Gauteng alone, says Minister Nxesi

As businesses felt the crunch of the coronavirus lockdown, tens of thousands of people looked to the UIF for financial help.

FILE: Labour and Employment Minister Thulas Nxesi. Picture: @deptoflabour/Twitter

CAPE TOWN – Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi on Tuesday said more than R20 billion in Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) funds have been paid out in Gauteng alone.

As businesses felt the crunch of the coronavirus lockdown, tens of thousands of people looked to the UIF for financial help.

Nxesi briefed a sitting of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) on Tuesday.

The minister said a massive increase in applications for financial support meant billions of rand had to be paid out to businesses and laid-off workers.

“The UIF was faced with massively increasing the volume of the disbursements, in fact, a tenfold increase.”

Nxesi said most of the disbursements went to struggling businesses in the country’s economic hub Gauteng.

“For example, in Gauteng R23 billion was disbursed in R5 million payments, in the Northern Cape R484 million was disbursed in over a thousand payments,” he said.

The minister also noted how fraud was still prevalent but thanked businesses who came forward and returned monies received improperly.

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