The Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation will not reduce social welfare assistance paid out to Fijians who qualify under the programme.
Minister Responsible Lynda Tabuya said the Ministry is currently undertaking a review of the Social Protection Programme, in partnership with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Tabuya said that beneficiaries who have passed on or deceased, the Ministry has continued to pay-out to the bank accounts of these beneficiaries – this is due to the lack of monitoring of the FijiFirst Government.
“The Government is now working with Fiji Care to help the Ministry with an online portal where the Social Welfare Officers are now able to access information on those who have been deceased that have their beneficiaries come to claim.”
She also indicated that they found from beneficiaries is that there are other beneficiaries on the Social Welfare Programme that are able-bodied, who are able to work.
Tabuya said it is part of the Ministry’s mandate to use the Budget to ensure that there are people in the programme that are able-bodied- there were many that are not in the program due to COVID-19.
“We are out of the pandemic, there are now jobs available – The Ministry can train our people in the welfare programme to graduate out of the programme. This is what the Ministry is now committed to do, we need to move them out of the programme and that is the commitment to take people out of poverty,” Tabuya added.