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Bring cash transfer stipends closer home, state told

Governor Ngilu, ex-nominated Wiper MP Mutemi say the elderly are suffering

In Summary

•Through a statement on Sunday, Mutemi called for the devolving of the cash transfer programme to a locational level to relieve the beneficiaries of the high transport cost.

•Ngilu said disbursing the stipends through banks had turned into a nightmare.

Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu.
Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu.
Image: MUSEMBI NZENGU

Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu and former nominated Wiper MP Bishop Robert Mutemi have said the elderly endure pain and suffering to access the state’s cash transfer stipends.

The two leaders have asked the government to vary the methods they use to get the money to cushion the elderly. 

Through a statement on Sunday, Mutemi called for the devolving of the cash transfer programme to a locational level to relieve the beneficiaries of the high transport cost they incur.

“The elderly and persons with disabilities have serious mobility challenges. Why not bring services closer to them? They are silent because they don’t have a voice,” Mutemi said.

While addressing a public rally at Wikililye trading centre in Kitui Central subcounty on Friday, Ngilu urged the government to use mobile money transfers to end the problems the elderly undergo.

Ngilu said disbursing the stipends through banks had turned into a nightmare.

“It is wrong to subject the elderly to long queues and waiting hours within bank halls. Something must be done to address their plight,” she said.

She questioned the State Department of Social Protection’s rationale for continuing to dispense the monies through banks while every other beneficiary owns a mobile phone and has access to mobile money transfer services.

Ngilu said some of the elderly beneficiaries spend long nights outside banks after business hours lapse before their turn to be served. She said such a scenario puts their already deteriorating health at more risk.

“Some of these elderly persons travel hundreds of kilometres to collect the stipend and can neither afford the fare to return home and come back the next day nor get decent accommodation in towns,” she said.

Edited by Kiilu Damaris