Uganda: Tracing Glitches in Covid-19 Relief Cash – AllAfrica – Top Africa News

By Damali Mukhaye
With only 13 days to the end of lockdown, 56.5 per cent of the targeted vulnerable people are still waiting for government cash relief.
On June 20, the government announced plans to give cash to 501,107 people selected from 42 cities and municipalities across the country. But the process has since been marred by registration hitches amid allegations of corruption and disagreements with local leaders.
Three weeks later, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Mr Aggrey Kibenge, told Daily Monitor that 217,688 (43.5 per cent) of the targeted beneficiaries had by yesterday received the Shs100,000 each.
This means that a total of 283,419 are yet to receive their money.
Mr Kibenge revealed that 469,762 of the targeted beneficiaries had been uploaded on a system the ministry of Gender is basing on to pay people.
"We are short of only 30,000 names of beneficiaries to complete our registration. These should be done in the next few days," Mr Kibenge said.
He revealed that the system had rejected a total of 162,752 beneficiaries by yesterday because their data was not matching.
To date, several glitches continue to surface in the ongoing distribution of the Covid-19 relief cash.
The dissemination of the money was launched on July 9 with Mr Godfrey Oloya, a boda boda rider in Gulu District, getting confirmed as the first recipient.
A Daily Monitor mini-survey, however, shows that several Ugandans who registered for the money have not yet received it.
The complaints
Ms Sharon Lukwago, a housewife and resident of Kyebando, a Kampala City suburb, said she has not yet received any money despite the fact that her personal data was captured by one of the local leaders in her area.
"I am still waiting for Nabbanja’s money. On whether it will come or not, only God knows," Ms Lukwago told Daily Monitor yesterday.
Ms Mary Nalule, aged 60, a farmer in Kireku Railyway Zone, Kira Municipality in Wakiso District, said she will not be getting the money because she lost her phone about two months ago.
"I heard that money will only be sent to the vulnerable poor who have phones and whose details were captured. So, what happens to me without a phone?" she told Daily Monitor yesterday.
"Government should have thought of alternative measures of distributing money to vulnerable people without phones," she added.
Mr Wana Kagezi, the chairperson of Kireku Railyway Zone, said the whole exercise lacks transparency.
"I registered residents in my locality but the majority have not got money yet. There are those who think that the money was given to me to hand over to them, but, I keep reminding them that I have not received anyone’s money," he said.
He added: "After completing the registration about two weeks ago, I sent the data to Mr Samson Bwogi, the principal town agent of Bweyogerere Ward. He took on the process from there."
Similarly, Mr Hussein Lutaaya, the chairperson of Katuba Zone in Bweyogerere Division, Kira Municipality, said after moving door to door registering people for the Covid-19 relief money, the forms were sent to the principal town agent (Mr Bwogi)
"I registered about 350 people but only 80 have informed me that they have received the money," he said.
He added: "Some people are complaining that we did not submit their details, yet, we registered them."
Mr Bwogi declined to comment and referred us to Mr Basamula Muganga, the deputy town clerk.
Limited number
Mr Muganga explained that the ministry of Gender gave them an allowance of about 31, 358 households to get registered from Kira Municipality, which has three divisions of Bweyogerere, Namugongo and Kira.
"We, however, registered more than 80,000 people. So, what happened is that while we were uploading names into the system and the names reached 31,358, the rest were automatically cut off," he said.
Similarly, Mr Muganga stated that those who registered but were not part of the vulnerable category were also spontaneously kicked out during the data entry exercise.
"But, for every person who registered and their particulars corresponded, including name, national identification number (NIN), telephone number, they will receive money. They just have to be patient because government has been very clear that things are moving on well and that the exercise has not stopped," he added.
Regarding the ongoing claims that people who did not register for the exercise are receiving the money, the Gender PS, Mr Kibenge said: "Those who are making the claims should show us proof. If you have the numbers of these persons, bring them to us and we crosscheck our systems."
So far, data from the Office of the Prime Minister shows that about 400,079 beneficiaries were submitted from cities and municipalities.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja told Parliament that a total of 150,915 have not been fully verified because of different irregularities, and committed to resolve some of the issues.
Covid kills 254 in 9 days as over 6,000 recover
Uganda has recorded 6,959 Covid-19 recoveries and 254 deaths in the last nine days, according to Ministry of Health statistics of July 5 to July 13.
The data released by Ministry of Health as on July 13 indicates that of the 44,901 samples tested in the period of nine days, 4,526 new Covid-19cases have been registered.
This brings cumulative number to 89,080 with 64,096 recoveries while the number of deaths now stands at 2,249.
Globally since last year, at least 189,352,212 Covid-19 cases have been registered with 4,077,413 deaths and 172,906,888 recoveries, according to worldometer data.
The country is currently under a second lockdown battling the second wave of the pandemic.
Despite last month when most health facilities were choking with Covid-19 patients, a number of health facilities have reported a decrease in the number of admissions. The Ministry of Health data also indicates that there has been a decrease in active cases on admission in health facilities.
On July 5, the active cases stood at 1,072 whereas as of July 13, the active cases on admission in health facilities stood at 853.
However going by government data, there has been an increase in the number of deaths registered per day. On July 5, the deaths were 17 and on July 13, the cases stood at 46.
Dr Charles Olaro, the director of curative services at Ministry of Health, said the second wave has presented with more severe and critical patients unlike the first one.
According to Dr Olaro, the public has to learn how to comply with Covid-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs) and those eligible for vaccination should go for it. In some districts, myths and misconceptions are still hindering the Covid-19 fight.
For example, a section of Covid-19 patients in Butaleja District have shunned health facilities and resorted to witchcraft for Covid-19 management.
Ms Florence Nebanda, the district Woman Member of Parliament, said some of the residents believe that witchcraft is treatment to cure Covid-19.
According to Ms Nebanda, other residents have abandoned health facilities due to different perceptions such as the fear of being administered with fake vaccines as earlier reported in the media.
"It is evident that people are not reporting back having got the results; those who manage to stay eventually ran away from the care simply because they have a different perception of the vaccine," Ms Nebanda said.
Samples tested
Cum. cases
Daily deaths
Cum deaths
Daily recoveries
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