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House proposes Sh2,000 handout for poor elderly

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Denzel Musumba

Denzel Musumba


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Parliament wants the poor elderly to be given a monthly handout to help them through retirement under a proposed State-funded social welfare scheme.MPs debated a Motion that could see the country’s estimated 1.8 million aged over 60 years receive Sh2,000 monthly starting July 1, next year.The Government would be required to set aside Sh3.6 billion every month to roll out the scheme, if the Motion sponsored by Gwassi MP John Mbadi is approved.Currently, it has allocated Sh530 million for a pilot cash transfer project in which those over 65 years in 44 selected districts receive Sh1,500 every month.MPs concluded debate but a vote for it to pass the second reading was postponed to next week when finance minister Uhuru would give the Government’s response.Yesterday MPs questioned the criteria used to identify the benefiting regions in the pilot scheme. But Gender Minister Naomi Shaban defended the programme, citing inadequate funds. "We have asked that Treasury in the next financial year doubles the amount from Sh530 million to slightly more than Sh1 billion to improve coverage," said Dr Shaban.