Elderly to benefit from monthly stipend
18 March 2015, 09:17
Nairobi – All elderly persons above 85 years are set to benefit from a monthly stipend regardless of the government’s laid down conditions for vulnerable beneficiaries.
Labor Cabinet Secretary, Kazungu Kambi said his Ministry has included the universal stipend to support the elderly persons on the current Older Persons Cash Transfer programme and hinted that the Cabinet has shown interest and commitment to the initiative.
Kambi, who had appeared before the National Assembly Labor and Social Welfare committee, asked the MPs to back the initiative when forwarded to Parliament for adoption as Treasury considers the proposed budgetary allocation for the programme’s full implementation in the 2015/16 financial year.
He declined to expose the Executive’s proposed budget towards the project.
“Some countries have such universal stipend programmes to elderly at certain age bracket and we have to look into this. This programme is 100 percent government funded to support persons above 85 years because they are few, before progressively come down vulnerable age brackets,” Kambi told the committee chaired by Matungu MP, David Were.
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Responding to the committee’s raised issue of corruption and favoritism in identifying vulnerable groups in such government’s programmes, Kambi reiterated that his ministry is set to adopt biometric service provider system to overcome the vice.
“The biometric service provider system will allow identified beneficiaries to sign to get the stipend than giving it to their care-givers who have been corrupt,” said Kambi.
However, the MPs asked the Cabinet Secretary to involve them entirely once the initiative is rolled out to help overcome favoritism, corruption, among other malpractices.
“No MP is ever aware of government scholarship programmes for students in their constituencies. Instead the initiatives are in the hands of sub-County Commissioners and chiefs,” said Mt. Elgon MP, John Serut.
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