Social Cash Transfer will succeed, assures Wina
GOVERNMENT remains committed to ensuring the success of the implementation of the social cash transfer programme, says Vice President Inonge Wina. Ms Wina said this yesterday in Parliament when she delivered a ministerial statement on the alleged misuse and misapplication of the social cash transfer funds. "On behalf of the PF Government led by President Edgar Lungu and indeed on my own behalf, i would like to reiterate Government's commitment to ensuring the success of its social protection programmes," Ms Wina said. Ms Wina said that towards the end of 2017 following complaints from beneficiaries and irregularities highlighted in the internal auditors report at the Ministry of Community Development about the implementation of social cash transfer, a team of auditors from the Office of the controller of internal audit was constituted to carry out a country wide audit. She said to further address the issues surrounding the implementation of social cash transfer programme, a number of meetings were held at Cabinet Office on the 6th, 13th and 14th June 2018. Ms Wina said following the decision to withhold funds, a meeting was held on September 5, at Cabinet office with cooperating partners at which Government assured them it was doing everything possible to safeguard the public resources. She said that a special committee that was set up to look into the social cash transfer irregularities sat for 17 days at which 56 officers among them two permanent secretaries, six directors and eight former directors were interviewed. It was generally observed that most of the issues that caused the unsuccessful implementation of contract between Zampost and the Ministry were mainly due to poor human interaction, communication and general disregard for laid down Government procedures. "Government deeply regrets the alleged malpractice in the administration of social cash transfer funds meant for the vulnerable. "I wish to assure the general public through this House, the cooperating partners that appropriate action will be taken on whoever will be found wanting," the vice President said. Mapatizya UPND member of Parliament Clive Miyanda asked Ms Wina where the funds were between January and August 2018 when the vulnerable people were not paid? And UPND Katuba MP Patricia Mwachingwele asked the Vice President where the 2.7 million pounds that was refunded to Britain's DFID came from? In response Ms Wina said the funds were in the bank account. She clarified that the social cash transfer programme is 70 percent funded by Government and 30 percent by cooperating partners. She said some cooperating partners have shown willingness to continue partnering with Government to fund the programme.
On behalf of the PF Government led by President Edgar Lungu and indeed on my own behalf, i would like to reiterate Government’s commitment to ensuring the success of its social protection programmes,” — Ms Wina.