PostBank Uganda, has kicked off the disbursement of government grants to senior citizens aged 80 years and above, following the roll out of Social Assistance Grants for Empowerment (SAGE) in Teso-Sub region.
Hon. Peace Regis Mutuuzo, the State Minister for Gender and Culture unveiled the SAGE program in Teso-Sub region at Mukura Sub County, Ngora district. Ngora, Bukedea, Soroti and Serere are among the new districts within Teso to be added to the program.
Using PostBank Uganda as a payment service provider, its mobile vans (Bank on wheels) started the disbursement of funds to elders on a bi-monthly basis. The vans will work as service points and reach the last mile in hard to reach areas where connectivity is a challenge.
Speaking at the launch Mr. Albert Barekye, the General Manager Operations PostBank Uganda thanked the government, the Ministry of Gender and other stakeholders for their multilateral efforts towards improving lives and livelihoods of the elderly. “We pledge our continued support to the program. Through the Bank on Wheel, we are able to reach the elder person at the parish level,” Mr. Barekye added.
He noted that PostBank has been serving the senior citizens since 2016 and the addition of the districts in Teso-sub region takes it to 85 districts benefiting over 230,000 senior citizens countrywide. He advised the elder persons to use their money profitably.
During the launch Hon. Mutuuzo applauded PostBank for the unwavering collaboration with the Ministry to better the lives of the elderly through payments reaching up to parish level. She added that “The Ministry was set to roll out the SAGE program to over 135 districts but due to COVID-19 the exercise was halted, with approvals on the Standard Operating Procedures from the national taskforce we are glad to resume the process hence the launch here today in Ngora to cover the elderly in Teso-sub region.”
She concluded that “the government through the Ministry guarantees to identify and payout funds to all elderly person above 80 years in the country. We should also continue to observe the SOPs set by the Ministry of Health in the fight against the spread of COVID-19.”
SAGE started in 2016 as an initiative to reduce poverty amongst the elderly who have a low productivity and can barely go to work.