Scale Up Funding for LEAP – Gov’t Told
The Social Enterprise Development Foundation of West Africa (SEND–Ghana), has urged government to make adequate provision for the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) programme.
Presenting to the media their analysis of the 2019 budget yesterday, Mrs. Harriet Nuamah said the cash transfer amount to LEAP beneficiaries is inadequate to enable them meet their daily nutritional requirements.
According to a Ghana Living Standard Survey (GLSS) report 8.2 percent of Ghanaians are extremely poor.
Based on 2017 population projections, the report said 2.4 million Ghanaians could not afford to spend GH¢2.69 per day in 2016 to 2017 on food (GH¢982.1 per year).
With this report, a single member household is expected to receive GH¢161.4 every two months from the LEAP programme.
However, beneficiaries are currently receiving GH¢64 bi-monthly which is 60 percent less the amount they should receive.
Despite government’s promises to scale up the programme, the allocation to LEAP in the 2019 budget statement was GH¢168 million, a decrease of what was allocated to the programme last year.
Mrs. Nuamah in her recommendation urged government to scale up its funding for LEAP to allow for increase in the cash grant for beneficiaries.
“This has the potential to contribute to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 1.2 and 10 (No Poverty, Zero Hunger and Reduced Inequalities),” She stressed.
Based on the mandate of the National Development Planning Commission to include the poor and vulnerable in national planning and development, the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) Programme was established as the flagship social Protection programme of Ghana’s Social Protection Strategy.
It is a social cash transfer programme that provides cash and health insurance to the extremely poor households across the country.
The programme’s main aim is to alleviate short-term poverty and encourage long-term human capital development.
By: Emmanuel Yeboah Britwum