National
MPs want social protection for elderly
Publish Date: Jan 30, 2014
MPs want social protection for elderly
  • mail
  • img
newvision

By John Odyek and Paul Kiwuuwa

The Uganda Parliamentary Forum on Social Protection has asked government to spread out the payment of funds to persons aged 65 years in the country and above so that all benefit from the social protection funds.


Flavia Kabahenda, chairperson of the forum said Wednesday that there are over 1.3m persons aged 65 years and above but only a handful in a few districts were getting the social protection funds.

Kabahenda said only 105,000 elderly persons are getting the sh25,000 given by government under the National Social Protection Policy. This was during a press conference held at Parliament in Kampala to address the challenges faced by the elderly persons and programs put in place to address them.

“We want a national roll out so that all elder persons can benefit from this money. Only 14 districts out of 112 districts are benefitting which is a small number. This money is spent on health care, building houses and supporting the elderly people,” Kabahenda also Kyegegwa Woman MP said.

Kabahenda explained that in July 2010 the ministry of gender, labour and social development begun a pilot Senior Citizen Grant Scheme as part of the wider social protection programme under which the money is being paid out.

Studies show that over 30% of older persons live in extreme poverty, are socially excluded and many are burdened, looking after orphans and vulnerable children.

She said over the past three years the scheme has remained in 14 districts including Amudat, Napak, Nakapiripi, Kole, Apac, Kyegerwa, Kaberamaido, Nebbi, Moroto, Katakwi, Kiboga, Kyenjojo, Zombo.

“The project targets elder people aged 65 years and above except in Karamoja where the age eligibility is 60 years. The Vulnerable Family Grant targets households with extremely low labour capacity who receive a monthly payment of sh25,000 through MTN Uganda mobile money services. Kabahenda said they hope with time the scheme would weed out elders getting pension and getting other benefits.

State minister for fisheries Ruth Nankabirwa who is also the Kiboga woman MP said: “I oppose that every elder who has clocked 65 years  should  benefit from the project because government cannot not have enough money to cater for all. It should benefit only the poor and vulnerable who can’t afford to get essentials but not the rich ones.”

Nankabirwa added that though the money is little it has helped the elders to buy essential commodities like salt, sugar, kerosene, food and medicines.

Jacob Opolot Palisa county MP who is also the treasurer of the forum said: “Some of the beneficiaries of the money had formed SACCOS that have helped them to build low cost houses.”

Keneth Obote Kalaki county MP and member of the forum said: “Although President Yoweri Museveni recently pledged that government will take responsibility for health, economic and social needs to people who have at reached 100 years. The age should be reduced to 70 years because few Ugandans can make it to 100 years”.

Museveni recently promised that the needs of people who reach 100 years would be met during the burial of the late Rwot Anania Akera Bobi chief in Acholi district who died at 100 years early this month.

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
EOC tribunal hearings to start in October
THE Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) tribunal hearings that seek to complement work by the judiciary to reduce the high case backlog are set to start next month...
Bride price fate awaits Supreme Court verdict
THE fate of Bride Price awaits a Supreme Court verdict after the parties for and against its existence, made their concluding submissions at the court...
Uganda relies on EU satellite for aviation
Lawmakers on the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) have been told that Uganda, in the absence of functioning radar, is relying on a satellite owned by the European Union to ensure aviation safety at Entebbe Airport....
Govt told to use different interventions in PRDP
The Government has been advised to use different intervention approach to ensure that the lives of the people in northern Uganda improves as Peace, Recovery Development Plan (PRDP II) is coming to an end....
UPDF commander has case to answer - court
The Army’s top court has ruled that, Col. Hassan Kimbowa, formally the commander of UPDF Battle Group 11+ in Somalia should defend himself against charges of selling fuel meant for peace keeping operations in the horn of Africa nation....
Another Inter-Agency appeal for S. Sudanese refugees launched
The Ugandan government, UNHCR and other UN agencies have launched another Inter-Agency Appeal asking donor community to avail them with more than US$ 220m (about sh572b) to address the plight of South Sudan refugees living in in the country...
Will early retirement solve Uganda’s unemployment problem?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter