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PM Reaffirms His Engagement To Fight Poverty And Exclusion For A More Inclusive Society

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The Prime Minister, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, reaffirmed his and Government’s engagement to continue the unrelenting fight against poverty and exclusion for a more inclusive society at a ceremony commemorating the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty 2023, yesterday, at Taher Bagh, Port-Louis. The theme for 2023 is “Decent Work and Social Protection: Putting Dignity in Practice for All”.

In his address, the Prime Minister stated that the day is opportune to reiterate Government’s engagement to eliminate poverty as well as to evaluate progress implemented and see how far the objectives set have been reached in achieving social inclusion. Government, he stressed, is determined to redouble efforts to enhance the quality of life of citizens in particular lower income families. He pointed out that in a bid to improve the quality of life and raise the socio-economic status, massive infrastructural projects are being implemented across the country.

PM at a ceremony on International Day for the Eradication of Poverty 2023

He recalled the Marshall Plan on Poverty which was implemented in 2016-2017 to come to the rescue of vulnerable families through various support programmes including financial assistance. Social protection measures to ensure the integration of families registered under the Social Register of Mauritius (SRM) including access to education, and a decent social housing facility are other key measures that were brought forth by the Prime Minister. He further underscored that out of the 12 000 houses to be constructed by the Government, 10% of them are reserved for families registered under the SRM.

Mr Jugnauth expressed satisfaction as regard the socio-economic progress of the country, while highlighting a decrease in inequality gap from 39.2% in 2017 to 30.4 in 2022. Under the SRM, 6 000 families have benefitted from financial support to the tune of Rs 33 million on a monthly basis and a total of Rs 1.5 billion from 2016 to date, he added.

PM at a ceremony on International Day for the Eradication of Poverty 2023

Speaking of the education sector, he recalled that a School Premium Scheme was introduced in 2017 to encourage students to opt for higher studies adding that 1 708 students have benefitted from the Scheme amounting to some Rs 43 million. In view to make education more accessible, the Prime Minister added that pre-primary education will be free as from January 2024.

As for the Income Support Programme under the Marshall Plan, he observed that from 2016 to now, Rs 2.3 billion has been disbursed. Mr Jugnauth also spoke of initiatives aimed at empowering women to become independent and earn a living.

For her part, Minister Jeewa-Daureeawoo highlighted governmental projects and measures implemented to support low-income families, reduce inequality, and address exclusion. They comprise: renovation of the hospitals across the island; building of new hospitals and mediclinics; modernisation of the transport system; increase in basic pensions for beneficiaries under the Ministry of Social Integration, Social Security and National Solidarity and an increase in financial provision for enhanced social integration in Budget 2023-2024.

PM at a ceremony on International Day for the Eradication of Poverty 2023

She reiterated Government’s commitment to work for the welfare of the country while striking a balance between social and economic development for a healthier, prosperous and harmonious nation.

On the same occasion a symbolic remittance of keys, vouchers and certificates was also held, namely: symbolic remittance of keys to four beneficiaries of housing units under the Full Concrete Housing Scheme (out of a total of 15); certificates to three beneficiaries under the Training Scheme (out of a total of 78 beneficiaries); certificates to three beneficiaries under the Life Education Ehnacement Programme (out of a total of 85 beneficiaries); start-up kits to five beneficiaries under the Economic Empowerment Scheme (out of a total of 77 beneficiaries); and gifts to two beneficiaries for exhibition of drawings for children (out of a total of 31 beneficiaries).

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