The Unemployment Insurance Fund is now taking security a step further as they hire auditors to track TERS payments. This relief scheme has birthed heaps of fraud worth millions as well as employers trying to keep TERS funds for themselves.
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The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) is now taking security a step further as they hire auditors to track Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS) payments. This relief scheme has birthed heaps of fraud worth millions as well as employers trying to keep TERS funds for themselves.
These auditors will be tracking the financial records of companies that received funds from TERS. This comes after some employees were already arrested due to engaging in shady handling of TERS funds.
On irregularities with TERS, UIF Spokesperson, Makhosonke Nuthelezi, said:
They may have slipped through the cracks simply because our system wasn't linked with other databases such as Home Affairs and SASSA but I think most importantly is that with the system, what we have done, is that even if you aren't a contributor to the UIF, we cannot punish the employees simply because the employer was not contributing to the fund.
To this effect, the UIF is now attempting to ensure that no employee is left behind and adopted the view of should they not be contributing to the UIF, the employers can still apply to the UIF and they will then only ask that the relationship between the employer and the employee is declared.
"I think that's where we might have opened the floodgates which might have lead us to paying people who are not supposed to be paid," explained Nuthelezi.
These audits will take place from 1 December as the UIF now begins briefing companies about this process.
The audits will take six months, says the spokesperson, but will be extended if it's not finished within those six months. "We must make sure that the Covid TERS benefit has been paid to the correct and the right employees," he said.
Millions of rands were lost due to these irregular payments.
Auditor-General, Kimi Makwetu found that there were many irregularities with the UIF Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS). The irregularities found by Makwetu include overpayments, underpayments, invalid rejection of beneficiaries, fraud and double-dipping.
The audit report, put together by Makwetu found that R140 556 822 was paid by the UIF to 35 043 applicants who had already received benefits from other state institutions which also included remuneration in some instances.
The report stated:
- NSFAS students who received stipends, were paid Ters benefit claims of R10 335 344.
- Beneficiaries by the SANDF received benefit claims of R327 638.
- Employees paid through PERSAL were paid benefit claims of R41 009 737.
- Disability grant recipients were paid Ters benefit claims of R69 419.
- Old age grant recipients were paid benefit claims of R88 814 684.
The report also revealed that citizens who were indicated as dead as per Home Affairs database, received TERS payments totaling R441 144.
We have always had this follow-the-money project ... we will have to follow the monies that we are paying.
Even if the irregularities didn't happen, Nuthelezi said these audits would have happened nonetheless.
Employers and companies who received TERS funds and did not give them to their employees will be taken to court and might receive fines or even some jail sentences. Employees who were affected will have their funds recovered but this is yet to be discussed.Tags: lockdown extendeddlamini zumaNational Lockdownsouth africauif registrationsunemployment insurance fundpaymentsuif tersterstemporary relief schemeuif fraudters fraudmakwetuauditor generalters audituif audituifuif claimui19 formuif registrationuif onlineuif paymentsuif maternitydepartment of labour uifcheck uif claim status onlineuif claims onlineuif filingui19 form 2019uif payment after signingdepartment of labour uif paymentsuif registration form for employeesuif maternity benefits 2019uif benefitsuif for domestic workersuif formrights of workers registered for uifuif19 formregister for uifthe rights of workers registered for uiframaphosaPresident Ramaphosanational state of disastercovidcovid19Covid-19alcohol banalcohol sale rulescurfewuif terters extendcoronacoronaviruslockdown level 1