The Constitutional Court has given SASSA (South African Social Security Agency) until tomorrow (10 February) to indicate whether it intends to make further amendments to a request for proposals (RFP) for the R10-billion social grant tender.

If there are changes, these have to be made by Friday 13 February 2015.

In December, the agency was ordered by the court to submit a new request for proposals for a five-year social grant payment tender, following an April order that it initiate a new tender process for the contract. Accordingly, the agency issued an RFP on 22 October, with proposals to be submitted by 12 December.

However, Net1 UEPS Technologies argued that the tender specifications were not sufficiently clear regarding a number of critical points and failed to comply with the RFP requirements specified in the court’s order.

Net1 requested that the RFP be withdrawn, which SASSA refused, and the company applied to the court in November to “ensure that there is no ambiguity in the tender specifications or conflict with the court’s April 2014 remedy
order in an attempt to reduce the likelihood of another prolonged legal challenge should SASSA award a new tender”, according to a statement at the time from Net1 UEPS.

The application was opposed by both SASSA and Allpay, which was the unsuccessful bidder for the previous contract.

However on 5 December, the court ordered that the deadline for submission of bids for the RFP be extended to 7 February 2015.

On 20 January 2015, Net1 UEPS filed further affidavits to the court, followed on 27 January by written submissions, setting out its reasons and arguments for a court order setting aside the RFP and/or directing SASSA to issue a corrected RFP.