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DW / "We are falling ill," the Manica elderly say
More than 22,000 elderly people have been without social benefits in Manica province since October, and many are starving. The figures are from the National Institute of Social Action (INAS), which claims to have no money to distribute.
The elderly say they have not received their subsidies since last October, and are running into serious difficulties on a daily basis. They ask to speak anonymously for fear of reprisals.
They say they are starving because they have no money to buy food. “We are falling ill. We are asking the state to come and talk to us,” one of the elderly people interviewed by DW Africa said.
“We want to complain, but they say we cannot complain because this money [that of the social subsidy] is offered,” another elderly man says. “But this three months’ money, there is someone who has it, and if we keep quiet, that money will never come out,” he says. “They will only start to pay from January onwards and we do not want this. Everything we had is finished. Here we are in another year, and we have nothing,” he said.
INAS out money
Altogether, 22,458 elderly beneficiaries of the basic social allowance have received no payment for three months, according to the National Institute of Social Action (INAS). They reside in eight districts: Chimoio, Mossurize, Machaze, Gondola, Sussundenga, Macate, Vanduzi and Manica.
The head of INAS’s planning and statistics division in Chimoio, Edmundo Alberto Semo, says he understands the elderly’s complaints but that, due to the economic situation in Mozambique, there was no money to pay the subsidies.
“We managed to cover the nine months January to September (2017) but it was not possible to cover the months of October, November and December,” he explains.
Edmundo Alberto Semo believes that the problem will be solved soon. “As soon as there is budgetary availability, we will pay these overdue months, and if it [the money] becomes available in January, we will be ready to make payment.”Source: Deutsche Welle
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