Uhuru launches bio-metric system for social security scheme
27 January 2015, 18:18
Nairobi - President Uhuru Kenyatta Tuesday launched Kenya’s first Social
Protection Week with the aim of creating links among Government
agencies involved in social protection programmes.
The flagship of the Government’s social protection schemes are the
cash transfer programmes to the elderly, orphans, the disabled and the
Hunger Safety Net Programme.
During the one week event, government bodies delivering social
assistance and security will interact with each other and come up with
an action plan to improve synergy and reduce mismanagement of funds.
Key to preventing duplication and mismanagement of funds for the
vulnerable sections of Kenyans will be a biometric registration, which
the President launched as he opened the conference at the KICC.
The system will curtail duplication since the collection of payments will be pegged on the individual’s fingerprints.
The move to employ a biometric system comes after a directive issued
by President Kenyatta last year, to the Ministry of Labour, Social
Security and Services, to safeguard the billions of Shillings the
Government was allocating to support vulnerable people.
This financial year alone, the Government allocated KES 13.6 billion
to support cash transfer programmes for older persons; orphans and
vulnerable children; persons with severe disabilities. The cash transfer
programmes also include the Hunger Safety Net Programme targeting the
most poor and vulnerable households in Turkana, Mandera, Marsabit and
President Kenyatta said there is no dignity in poverty and it is
unacceptable for 46 percent of Kenyans to live below the poverty line.
" There is little dignity for the destitute. There is little dignity
for any nation that allows nearly half its people to continue in
poverty, " said the President.
He said the Government will dedicate more funds to provide safety nets for those who have no means to support themselves.
" We expect that by the end of this fiscal year, 521, 000 households
across the country should benefit from the programmes, " the President
He said the Government has developed specific interventions on social
protection to the youth, women and persons with disabilities, which
include the National Youth Service 5 Point Vision, the Youth Enterprise
Development Fund and the Uwezo Fund.
Other interventions are the Women Enterprise Fund, the National
Development Fund for Persons with Disabilities, the Access to Government
Procurement Opportunities, and the Youth Training and Internship
He expressed Government’s commitment to protecting the rights of
every working Kenyan by maintaining decent conditions of work including
wages, working time, occupational safety and health.
The Government also developed a National Social Protection Policy and
prepared a Sessional Paper ready for debate by the National Assembly.
The President, at the same time, urged NHIF to work with relevant
arms of Government to ensure that at least 25 million Kenyans have
health insurance before the end of this year.
President Kenyatta said the Government has commissioned a pilot
Health Insurance Subsidy Programme covering 23, 500 poor and vulnerable
households in the country.
Under the pilot programme in-patient and out-patient services are being provided to orphans and vulnerable children.
" Plans are on course to provide health insurance cover to 189,717 older persons and people with severe disabilities," he added.
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