Government intends to to raise the monthly payment for older persons under the Social Assistance Grant for Empowerment-SAGE programme, the State Minister for Disability and Elderly, Sarah Kanyike has said.
The government in 2011 piloted the programme in the 15 districts where older persons above 65 years were enrolled. The scheme was later rolled out across the country two years later and raised the minimum age to 80 years. Each of the qualified older people has been receiving a monthly payment of 25,000 Shillings.
While on a monitoring visit to Katakwi District on Thursday, Kanyike revealed that the ministry’s technical team is developing a cabinet paper to be discussed in the cabinet on how to reduce the age of beneficiaries.
She added that her ministry is revising the monthly payment of elders to about 100,000 Shillings because of the high cost of living, following complaints from the older persons and their leaders in Katakwi district that the government should consider reducing the age from 80 to 65 years and also increase the monthly payment from 25,000 Shillings to over 50,000 Shillings.
According to Walter Elakas Okiring the Katakwi LCV Chairperson, although SAGE has helped the district recover from the post-war effects, many older persons don’t live beyond 80 years due to the recent wars and persistent Karimojong incursions in the district.