State disburses Sh2. 1 billion for Inua Jamii beneficiaries

Principal Secretary State Department for Social Protection and Senior Citizen Affairs Joseph Motari addresses the press in Nairobi on 7th February 2024. [Collins Oduor, Standard]

More than 200,000 beneficiaries of the Inua Jamii programme will start receiving their monthly stipend after the government released Sh2.1 billion for January disbursements.

Social Protection and Senior Citizen Affairs Principal Secretary Joseph Motari said the 207,000 Orphans and Vulnerable Children and Persons with Severe Disabilities (PWSD) will receive the money through mobile transfer after the transition from bank transfers to mobile money.

Motari announced that Sh5.9 million has also been disbursed under the Nutrition Improvement through Cash and Health Education (NICHE) complementary program to cushion the vulnerable population from poverty and hunger.

The individuals are part of the 1,233,149 beneficiaries under the Inua Jamii Programme.

“The payment commences on February 7, 2024 through Mpesa. The disbursement will start with the orphans and vulnerable children and persons with severe disabilities,” said Motari.

However, the PS said there are about 100,000 caregivers for orphans and individuals with severe disabilities who have not enrolled on Mpesa after the presidential directive to change delivery mechanisms to mobile money for the monthly stipends.

“We are giving an amnesty for the caregivers to enroll to the mobile money transfer by the end of this month. They can do so by dialing *222# using their registered phone numbers,” said the PS.

Motari assured that the unregistered beneficiaries still receive their Sh2,000 social protection cash through the bank agents in their localities.

“We understand some caregivers could be experiencing technological challenges but some are completely reluctant to comply but we will allow them to opt in within this last amnesty period or they won’t receive the money in future disbursements,” he said.

Motari revealed that there is an ongoing assessment to establish the degree of need for the 100,000 unregistered beneficiaries so that those who cannot afford a mobile phone will be provided with one, and a registered sim card by Safaricom.

Surprisingly, the PS noted that North Eastern is the leading region with high number of beneficiaries who have enrolled for the mobile money transfers despite being far flung areas.

Last year during the 60th Jamhuri Day Celebrations President William Ruto announced transitioning from bank transfer to mobile money starting January 2024 was meant to save the beneficiaries from travelling long distances to collect the cash and spending significant portions of their stipend on logistics..

“We are working with Safaricom and the are no charges for the mobile money transactions,” said the PS.

Previously, the beneficiaries were receiving the social protection stipends from the bank agents in their local areas.

“The National Government Officials are on the ground sensitising the beneficiaries on the need to shit to the new disbursement mechanism,” said the PS.

Disbursement for the stipend for elderly persons started in December 2023 on the Mpesa mobile money service.

The PS urged the caregivers to develop a saving culture to cushion them from unforeseen financial emergencies.

By AFP 8 hrs ago
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