Kenya: Old People in Tharaka-Nithi Threaten to Shun Census Over Cash

21 August 2019

Hundreds of elderly people aged over 70 years from Muthambi Sub-County, Tharaka-Nithi County have threatened to boycott this year's census and any other government exercise until they are included in the Inua Jamii cash transfer programme.

Addressing journalists Tuesday at Iriga chief's camp where they held a demonstration to, the old men and women, some said to be aged 100 years, expressed disappointment with the government for "side-lining" them while their counterparts in other areas are getting the cash.

"I lost my husband and property during the fight for independence but I am now suffering in poverty as young people enjoy the fruits of our labour," said Ms Mariam Kanyua, who claimed she is 106-year-old.


Ms Kanyua said she had given up on the monthly stipend because most of her colleagues who were registered for it died before receiving the money.

Mr Stephen Mukobwa said details of 350 elderly people from the area were taken during the start of the programme but they have been waiting for the money in vain.

He said any time they visit the sub-county social services offices in Kieganguru, they are told that there is a problem with the system where their details were captured and that they should be patient as the issue is being worked on.

He said they recently sought the intervention of their MP Kareke Mbiuki who promised to follow-up on the matter but nothing has been forthcoming.

"The government has neglected us and it should not disturb us by waking us up at night to be counted because it does not value us," said Mr Mukobwa.


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