Labour Principal Secretary issues stern warning to chiefs

Principal Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Social Services Ms. Susan Mochache has warned chiefs and their assistants against demanding bribes from elderly people before enlisting them in the Inua Jamii Programme.

Speaking during the launch of the programme at Egetonto in Gucha Sub County, Kisii County, Mochache noted that Inua jamii programme was a free government venture meant to assist the elderly but not to enrich some individuals.

Mochache advised complainants to report to the nearest police station, Social Development Office or the County Commissioner who will investigate and arrest the culprits.

The PS was responding to allegations by Nyamira Senator Kennedy Mong’are that chiefs in Gusii region were demanding between Sh.100 and 300 from the elderly persons before enlisting them for the 70 years and above programme.

Mochache said the government will soon enroll the elderly in the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) to cater for their hospital needs.

We will reach all eligible people including those who are not able to reach our offices due to various reasons, including disability. The chiefs and SDOs know where these people live, said Mochache.

She urged the beneficiaries to join welfare associations and save some of their benefits for development activities, including paying fees for their dependants.

Speaking separately at Geteri in West Mogirango Constituency in Nyamira County, Mong’are, a gubernatorial candidate with National Liberal Party appealed to Interior Ministry Ag CS Dr. Fred Matiang’i to crack down on chiefs who were allegedly extorting money from the elderly.

He also accused them of using the Nyumba Kumi initiative officials to harass the elderly by using police to arrest them and later demand a fine of between Sh 500-1,000 or be charged for loitering.

The Senator also claimed that the chiefs had declined to register people from affluent families who could take care of them.

Source: Kenya News Agency