Malawi to have pension scheme for the elderly

Malawi is expected to have a universal old age pension scheme for the elderly to address social and economical challenges faced by older persons in the country.

Minister of Gender Dr.Jean Kalirani: pension scheme would transform the lives of old age people

This follows a study report on the feasibility of a universal old age pension in Malawi which was commissioned by Minister of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare in 2016.

The study revealed that the existing informal and formal social security systems such as Katapila, Village Savings and Loans, Social Cash Transfer Programme and Public Work programme have limited scope and coverage leaving a large group of poor Malawians including older persons without adequate support.

Speaking after presiding over the official launch of the report on Saturday in Blantyre, Minister of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare Dr Jean Kalilani said it is sad that the elderly persons continue to work for as long as they possibly can, to meet their basic needs.

“Some of them resort to begging as a coping mechanism for them to survive. Breakdown of traditional systems of care and support have also made the situation of older persons to be dire. Old age poverty and destitution are becoming a common phenomenon in Malawi,” explained Kalilani.

The Minister said it is against this background that her ministry commissioned the study in order to explore the options for responding to the social and economic hardships people face when they grow.

She then said her ministry in conjunction with other concerned stakeholders such as Malawi Network of Older Persons Organisation (Manepo) will make full use of the findings in their policy as well as programme to bring a meaningful change in the lives of old people.

Kalilani added that she is optimistic that once the findings are implemented, the establishment of the pension scheme would transform the lives of old age people and make a major contribution to the achievement of wider developmental goals.

In his remarks, Help Age Africa Regional Director, Dr Prafulla Mishra commended government for its commitment to institute pension scheme for the elderly saying it would go a long way in uplifting the welfare of old people in Malawi.

“Malawi is one of the best countries in Africa which has put the welfare of the aged persons at heart. The plan, to establish the scheme for such vulnerable group is a clear manifestation of Malawi’s commitment to address social and economic challenges faced by old people,” he said.

Manepo Executive Director Andew Kanvala also said the launch of the report on the study is a milestone in the history of Malawi in as far as taking appropriate, inclusive and aged friendly means of addressing specific vulnerabilities in old age is concerned.

He said: “Manepo is of the view that addressing what happens to Malawians as the grow old is critical to successfully addressing the wider development challenges facing the nation,” he said.

Malawi is said to have 0.8 million older people who are aged 60 and above

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Nambewe
Guest

We cant stop developing Malawi because of crooks! What needs to happen is: crooks need to be got rid of and very strict measures put in place to make sure those crooks don’t touch this money! Our elderly people struggle too much at a time when they have no energy to look after themselves! I support the idea whole heartedly!!!

Luke
Guest

You are Mostly thankful to bring social grants to our old age people. I would vote for YOU if you stand as President candidate. May you Idea come to reality.

Babajonayi
Guest

Another way of broadening the cashgate basket. Pension scheme for what? Just register all nkhalambas in Malawi and be paying them monthly for their upkeep… The government has alot of money to accomplish this… Just cut the free things ministers get monthly by 50%, am sure you gonna realise enough resources… I hate pension thing, it’s just a way of milking from the ignorant

Peloma Pepe
Guest

This a welcome development that has been long overdue. Hopefully, some crooks will not view this as another source of syphoning money away from the deserving beneficiaries.

Mbungwa
Guest

This is the most welcome development for Malawi. That’s the way to go thanks to boma!

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