Senate committee seeks an update on Covid-19 funds


The Senate Ad Hoc Committee on Covid-19 Situation has written to three ministries asking to be furnished with the status of interventions made to mitigate the effects of coronavirus.

The Senate committee wants National Treasury, Trade and Labour ministries to give details on how Inua Jamii, Kazi Mtaani and the stimulus package have mitigated effects of Covid-19 so far.

On Tuesday, Committee chair Sylvia Kasanga said responses from the three ministries are expected next week.

“We need to know the number of people they have been able to reach, how much of the money that had been set aside has actually reached the ground,” she said.

In June, the government released Sh4.3 billion to be paid to beneficiaries in the national cash transfer programme, Inua Jamii.

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Social Protection Principal Secretary Nelson Marwa said a total of 1, 094, 323 beneficiaries would be paid Sh4, 000 in May and June. He said the money was paid promptly to cushion the vulnerable groups from the negative effects of Covid-19.

The Kazi Mtaani was championed by President Uhuru Kenyatta to provide employment to thousands of youths from informal settlements hard hit by the pandemic.

The government also announced a stimulus package to cushion Kenyans from the effects of Covid-19.

The Sh3.2 trillion 2020/21 Budget contained a Sh56.6 billion post COVID-19 economic stimulus package. The President also signed the 2019/20 Third Supplementary Budget, which provided Sh5 billion to Counties for their COVID-19 response and Sh3.4 billion for COVID-19 allowances to frontline health workers.

Kasanga said the senate committee, after getting the responses from the ministry will be able to establish the success of the programmes.

“We will then begin to engage the various ministries on post-Covid-19 measures that could be put in place to return life back to normal,” she added.

She further added that her committee will continue to push for more allocation of resources to mitigate the effects of the pandemic.

“My committee is now really focused on how to jump start the economy,” she stated.

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