THE Auditor General has revealed that over K450 million was not distributed to Social Cash Transfer beneficiaries leaving a coverage of 16.6 per cent of entitlement.

According to the Report of the Auditor General on the accounts of the financial year ending December, 2019, 632,327 programme beneficiaries were only paid amounts totalling K90,462,009 out of an expected amount of K542,772,052, leaving a balance of around K452 million that was not distributed to beneficiaries.

“In the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure for the financial year ended 31st December, 2019, a provision of K699,494,400 was made to cater for the implementation of Social Cash Transfer programmes against which amounts totalling K105,779,645 were released resulting in an under-funding of K593,714,755. The Administration of the Social Cash Transfer Programme provides that 90 per cent of the funded amount should be spent on the programme beneficiaries, while 10 per cent should be spent on the administration. In this regard, K95,201,681 (90 per cent) was to be spent on programme beneficiaries, while K10,577,964 (10 per cent) was to be spent on administrative activities,” the report read.

“During the period under review, an amount of K3,939,902 was brought forward from 2018, in respect of administrative funds, bringing the total available funds for administration to K14,517,866. As at 31st December, 2019, amounts totalling K90,462,009 had been spent on the programme beneficiaries resulting in under-expenditure of K4,739,672, while K16,672,829 was spent on administrative activities resulting in over-expenditure of K2,100,963. During the period under review, the Ministry had a total of 632,327 Social Cash Transfer beneficiaries located countrywide, who should have been paid amounts totalling K542,772,052. According to the programme, the beneficiaries were entitled to social cash payments every two months to assist in poverty alleviation. However, the 632,327 programme beneficiaries were only paid amounts totalling K90,462,009 out of an expected amount of K542,772,052, representing 16.67 per cent of entitlement.”

The report further revealed that the Ministry of Community Development failed to pay back K195,248 that was borrowed from the recovery account for input distribution.

“During 2019/2020 farming season, the Ministry disbursed FSP inputs to seven districts for various beneficiaries without disbursing funds to facilitate the distribution of the inputs. In this regard, the District Community Offices borrowed amounts totalling K195,248 from the recovery account for distribution of the inputs. The funds in the recovery account were meant for empowering vulnerable households to enable them achieve food security, which included purchasing of hammer mills and tractors. However, as at 31st August, 2020, the Ministry had not reimbursed the recovery account,” read the report.