The Prime Minister, Ms Robinah Nabbanja has revealed that the government is going to deliver cash as relief food to vulnerable who are affected by the 42 lockdown days via mobile money but not direct distribution has it was in first lock down period.
In a closed-door meeting with members of the Covid-19 National Task Force in kampala yesterday, the new Prime Minister, Ms Robinah Nabbanja, said she would use a different approach during her tenure.
“We have agreed to have direct payment method and voucher system to provide assistance to the vulnerable people [affected by the second lockdown]. This time, we shall not give food. People have phones, we shall use mobile money. Those who don’t have phones, we shall use voucher system [to give the relief assistance],” Ms Nabbanja said.
Highlighting orphanages and slum dwellers, the Prime Minister said a committee of the National Task Force will sit on Tuesday (tomorrow) to determine the amount that will be given and the time when people will start getting the support.
The government in April last year during the first lockdown, food distribution was door to door and it was targeting only the urban poor.
In Kampala Metropolitan area, a number of eligible people said they didn’t get.
The distribution was marred with corruption and accountability issues that have not been resolved to date.
However, the Health minister, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng, who was also in yesterday’s National Task Force meeting, said the donations for Covid-19 response last year were used in the right way.
According to Dr Ruhakana Rugunda the former prime minister, was to be distributed to the about1.4 million vulnerable people in urban areas.
The distribution was conducted at LC1 level and a package of 10kgs of maize flour, 3kgs of beans and packets of salt was to be given to each recipient. Lactating mothers and the sick were supposed to get 2kgs of powdered milk and sugar each respectively, according to Dr Rugunda.
The government received donations from well-wishers and private companies in terms of food, vehicles and cash.
“The donated vehicles were allocated to the districts. The cash donations, which totalled Shs29 billion, were given to the Consolidated Fund and it had to go through all the procedures of public finance and management [of the Finance Ministry],” Dr Aceng said.
“But [all] the money was remitted to the Ministry of Health last week. From this Shs29b money, Shs23b is for procurement of 282 pickup vehicles as was the initial intention of the President. The vehicles will be given to districts for [disease] surveillance and other activities,” she added.
The vehicles were ordered for and will be paid next week, according to the minister.
“A total of Shs3.5b was allocated for the construction of blood banks in Soroti and Arua,” she said, adding that the other money was allocated for the construction of health facilities in Malaba and others and that works are already going on.
On the second-wave crisis, Dr Aceng said they are taking quick actions to reverse.
Ugandans on social media have now urged the newly vetted Prime Minister Nabbanja to make sure that this time the process is as transparent as it possibly could.