Over 21,000 older persons in Kilifi County have benefited from Sh175 million stipends from the national Government’s Inua Jamii Cash Transfer Programme covering 4 months from March to June 2021.
The fully funded programme by the Government is aimed at cushioning the vulnerable members of the community from poverty and improving their livelihoods.
Speaking to KNA during the cash transfer exercise, the County Social Development Officer Harrison Mwakuni said that the elderly persons are entitled to Sh2000 per month which is paid to them every 2 months amounting to Sh4000 per beneficiary.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic presidential directives that discourage crowding in the country, Ministry of Labor and Social Protection arranged for the beneficiaries to access their stipends through mobile money options.
However, Kilifi County has not yet succeeded in the E-Wallet because of challenges such as illiteracy and fraud which makes it hard for them to access their stipends. “There is a time we tried to pay the beneficiaries through M-pesa but there are some challenges because you may find that the beneficiary used a phone number which doesn’t belong to him/her, maybe a family member or a neighbour. We had challenges whereby some of the stipend was directed to people who are not beneficiaries or caregivers of this programme. Currently we do not do the mobile money options in the county,” said Mwakumi.
Addressing the journalists during the cash transfer exercise at Kilifi County Social Protection offices, the beneficiaries lauded the government for improving their lives since the programme’s inception.
“This money has helped me a lot, I thank God and the government because all my family members have passed away except my son and I. I do not have a job and I entirely depend on this money. I can’t depend on my son because he is sick and has a family,” said 82-year-old Hamisi Sadikini from Sokoni ward, in Ganze sub county.
“I have received this money a number of times now. I appreciate so much. I use this money for home and my wife’s expenditure. I used to do farming but since I got an accident, my wife used to help me get food but she is now ill. I say thanks to the government,” said a 79-year-old Maurice Kalama from Chonyi Sub County after receiving his stipend.
The Government of Kenya has released Sh8,758,120,000 recently for payment to beneficiaries in the three programmes namely Orphans and Vulnerable Children, Older Persons and Persons with Severe Disabilities for 4 months under the Consolidated Cash Transfer Programme (CCTP).
By Treeza Auma and Harrison Yeri