SHIKANDA KAWANGA, Livingstone
GOVERNMENT has increased the number of beneficiaries under the social cash transfer in Southern Province to 66,000 from last year’s 19,000 to reduce poverty at household level.
Minister of Community Development and Social Welfare Emerine Kabanshi said the increase demonstrates Government’s commitment towards reducing poverty in Southern Province and the country as a whole.
She was speaking here on Friday after touring community-based rehabilitation projects in Livingstone, Zimba and Kazungula.
“Government wants all people to benefit from the empowerment programmes targeted at the vulnerable people in the country,” she said
And Mulungushi ward area coordination committee chairperson Gilbert Mubanga commended Government for introducing the social cash transfer programme in Livingstone.
Mr Mubanga said the robust programme has greatly helped the vulnerable in the communities that include widows,orphans and the disabled.
“We have about 500 people benefiting from cash transfer, these people can’t afford to buy food,” he said
Meanwhile, Centre of Excellence for E-governance and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) national coordinator at Cabinet Office Martine Mtonga says 80 percent progress has been made in electronic storage of Livingstone residents’ personal data under the implementation of the smart care programme.
Dr Mtonga,who is also Office of the President E-Government Division permanent secretary, said the smart care programme helps to monitor and register births and deaths.
“The smart care programme will help Government to plan for medical facilities for its newlyborn with reasonable accuracy, translating into improved child health services as well efficient use of drugs and supplies countrywide.
“This data will also help Government’s plan for education and other social services and pension schemes,” he said
He was speaking on Friday during a tour of the Livingstone Central Hospital, Maramba Clinic and Department of National Registration and Passport for Citizens (DNRPC) to assess how the smart care programme is running in terms of issuance of birth certificates.