The Government will soon roll out a Shs 33 billion social inclusion programme that will boost ongoing efforts to transform the socioeconomic wellbeing of Kenyans and restore the dignity of the most vulnerable in society, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said.
President Kenyatta pointed out that the funds for the Kenya Social and Economic Inclusion Programme are already been budgeted for and that the programme will be rolled out in coming months.
“The target of the programme is to streamline our delivery systems so that every Kenyan who needs help can get it. Importantly, the Ministry of Labour, the National Drought Management Authority, the Ministry of Health, and the Council of Governors will all be involved in its administration,” President Kenyatta said.
The Kenya Social and Economic Inclusion Programme builds on the success of the Government’s cash transfer programme dubbed “Inua Jamii” which has, in the last six years since 2013, grown from slightly over 200,000 beneficiaries to 1.3 million currently and a jump in funding from Shs 6.5 billion to Shs 26 billion in the same period.
President Kenyatta said that in the same period, an additional 100,000 households have been supported under the Hunger Safety Net Programme in Wajir, Mandera, Marsabit, and Turkana at a total cost of over Shs 25.2 billion.
“Dignity has been restored; livelihoods have been saved; and we have shown that this family called Kenya takes care of its own,” the President said.
The Head of State was speaking today at State House, Nairobi, when he flagged off fleet of new vehicles and motorcycles to be used by government officers to improve service delivery to the beneficiaries of the “Inua Jamii” programme.
The 42 vehicles and 48 motorcycles were procured with the help of the World Bank from Toyota Kenya, Isuzu East Africa and Simba Corp.
“The fleet of vehicles we launch today will support programmes implemented under the National Safety Net Programme (NSNP) which comprises four cash transfer Programmes: the Orphans and Vulnerable Children Cash Transfer; the Older Persons over 70 Cash Transfer; the Persons With Severe Disabilities Cash Transfer Programme; and the Hunger Safety Net Programme,” the Head of State said.
President Kenyatta said the success of the Inua Jamii programmes has proved wrong those who doubted Kenya’s ability to implement a robust and transformative social inclusion intervention.
“Well, I can only say that we have proved the critics wrong — and quite dramatically. The programme, run by the State Department for Social Protection under the Ministry of Labour, makes sure that cash transfers do get to hundreds of thousands of Kenyans, right across the country,” the President said.
He commended the Ministry of Labour, the Kenya Commercial Bank, Equity Bank, the Cooperative Bank of Kenya and Post Bank and Kenya’s development partners for working together in ensuring that the life changing cash transfer initiatives are a success.
President Kenyatta said the Inua Jamii programme, whose deeper anchor is a family’s love, ensures that the country’s senior citizens have some level of financial empowerment in their sunset years while the younger beneficiaries have the very best start in life.
“Kenya, ladies and gentlemen, is a family, and we take care of each other,” the President said.
Labour and Social Protection Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani said the success of Kenya’s Inua Jamii programme is demonstrated by the growing number of countries among them Bangladesh, Indonesia, India, Lesotho, Ethiopia, Uganda, Malawi and Tanzania which have visited the country in on benchmarking visits.
World Bank Programme Leader for Africa Paolo Belli assured President Kenyatta that Kenya’s development partners will continue to support the government's social and economic transformation agenda.
“The recent approval of the Kenya Social and Economic Inclusion project, with US $ 250 million IDA credit and $ 70 million DFID grant support, from all development partners is a testimony of this strong commitment” Mr Belli said.
Mr Belli thanked President Kenyatta for his leadership and commitment to furthering social protection for vulnerable Kenyans, saying development partners highly value their collaboration with the Kenya Government, especially in welfare and human capital development.