It has been all smiles for thousands of elderly persons this week as the state commenced Monday paying stipends under the social and special protection Cash Transfer (CT) programme.
Also earning the stipends under the multi-billion official cash transfer programme are persons with severe disability and, orphan and vulnerable children.
In Migori County alone, throngs of enthusiastic older persons have been trooping to various banks to each collect Sh 8,000 arrears earned in a period of four months last year.
According to the County Coordinator for Social Services Mr. Eliud Ondara, a total of Sh 351,940,000 will be distributed in the region alone by the end of the exercise.
Of the total figure, persons with severe disability will take the lion share of Sh 147,200,000, followed by the older persons with Sh127,320,000 and Sh 79,420,000 for orphans and vulnerable children.
The exercise that kicked off Monday has seen the general business in Migori, Awedo, Rongo, Kehancha and Sori towns shoot up drastically.
According to a quick survey by the local residents, there has been a big change in cash flow in the entire region following the rate at which the beneficiaries have been purchasing assorted goods from shops and in open food and Mitumba markets.
“The general business mood in this region has gone high and money has drastically increased in the hands of the local people since the beneficiaries started earning their stipends on Monday,” remarked one resident of Awendo town, Maurice Otieno.
Among those enjoying brisk business are the boda boda and taxi operators who have been ferrying the elderly persons to their respective banks and financial agents in different points within the County.
Collins Onyango, a boda boda rider from Ogwedhi market told KNA that he had four loyal clients since Monday who he ferried to Migori town and back on different days, giving him a total income of Sh 3,000.
The beneficiaries led by Mr. Paul Ndega (89) lauded President William Ruto and the Kenya Kwanza government for continuing with the payment of the stipends, contrary to earlier claims that they had stopped the programme.
By George Agimba