Parliament has been informed that poverty is currently defined as a phenomenon in which a household or a person’s consumption expenditure is not sufficient to afford the fundamental necessities of life, while abject poverty is a state in which one lives on $1.25 or less per day.
Assistant Minister for Presidential Affairs and Public Administration, Mr Dikgang Makgalemele said he had considered redefining the criteria used to identify poverty eradication beneficiaries, and that he hoped to have issued the revised criteria by the end of August 2015.
He further said the ideal time taken from assessment to actual implementation should be three months where a person was assessed within a month of registration, while training and procurement follow within the next two months.
Nonetheless, he said he was aware that there had been some challenges regarding training and procurement systems resulting in beneficiaries waiting unnecessarily longer.
He said beneficiaries would have to be assisted with project packages within three months from the time they register interest in the programme.
He further said he has already disbursed funds to the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development for district councils to equip various council buildings to be able to hasten beneficiaries training.
He also said he had made arrangements with the Ministry of Education and Skills Development to utilise some of its education training centres for beneficiaries’ training.
Furthermore, he said his ministry was working with various stakeholders to explore possible avenues to fast track procurement of equipment and materials needed for poverty eradication projects so that the turnaround time was reduced to an acceptable minimum.
The MP for Gabane-Mmankgodi, Maj. Gen. Pius Mokgware had asked the minister if he would consider redefining poverty and the criteria used to identify poverty eradication project beneficiaries.
He also wanted the minister to state the ideal time taken from assessment to actual implementation of poverty eradication projects as applied for by beneficiaries.