Community Development Mother and Child Health Minister Emerine Kabanshi says government has disbursed over K15 million Social Cash Transfer funds in the Western province.
Ms Kabanshi who is on tour of duty explaining government policies and programmes in Kaoma, Nkeyema and Luampa districts said about 32, 000 families from eight districts of the province have already benefitted from the Social Cash Transfer.
She said that the PF government under the leadership of President Michael Sata is an inclusive and listening government that wants to narrow down the gap between the rich and the poor in the country.
Ms Kabanshi said government understands the poverty datum levels hence it has focused its attention on the people in all the districts of Western province.
She named the districts in the province that have so far benefitted from the Social Cash Transfer as Lukulu, Kalabo, Mitete, Sioma and Senanga.
Others are Shangombo, Sikongo and Nalolo districts.
Ms Kabanshi explained that government will in October start registering vulnerable families in Mongu, Limulunga, Luampa, Koma and Nkeyema districts so that they can also benefit from the Social Cash Transfer by 2015.
She said government’s intentions was to reduce the poverty levels in the province to manageable levels adding that it has observed with dismay the escalating levels of poverty in the province.
Ms Kabanshi who also distributed cheques amounting to K28, 300 to five women clubs in Naliele ward and cash worth K27, 900 to 18 people in Kaoma central location under the Social Protection Fund urged the beneficiaries to utilize the funds for the intended purpose.
She said government will punish those beneficiaries who would be found misusing the money as the whole concept of the funds was to improve the living standards of many people in order to reduce maternal and child deaths in the province.
And one of the women empowerment beneficiaries from Kuyalutwe women club Rabecca Mwila urged her fellow women in Naliele ward to ensure that they accessed the monies in order to be self reliant.
Mrs Mwila also appealed to men in the area to allow their wives to form women clubs so that they could improve their lives.