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Postponement of the Third Phase of the Emergency Cash Transfers (ECT III)

10th May, 2023

As you may be aware, in continuation of the Government of Sierra Leone’s commitment to address economic shocks affecting our vulnerable people and communities, the National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA) and stakeholders has targeted and enrolled Thirty-Three Thousand, Five Hundred and Thirty-Two (33,532) households out of the Thirty-Five Thousand and Seventy-Five (35,075) prelisted and verified potential beneficiaries. These households are to receive one-time cash transfers from the third phase of the ECT program.

The stakeholders mentioned include Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), National Commission for Persons with Disability (NCPD), Local Councils, Sierra Leone Union on Disability Issues (SLUDi), Ministry of Labour and Social Security (MLSS), Ministry of Social Welfare (MSW), the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), Sierra Leone Police (SLP), and Sierra Leone Road Cross Society. The targeted beneficiaries included female-headed households, elderly-headed households, and households with persons with disabilities in 11 districts of Tonkolili, Kambia, Koinadugu, Falaba, Karene, Pujehun, Kailahun, Kono, Moyamba, Bonthe and Western Area Rural.

The ECT III program is funded by the World Bank through the Productive Social Safety Nets and Youth Employment (PSSNYE) Project. Additionally, UNICEF also provides technical assistance to the PSSNYE Project.

According to the implementation strategy, payments will be delivered electronically into mobile money wallets. In that regard, the selected Mobile Money Operator, Orange Money Finance SL (OMFSL), has registered and delivered SIMs to enrolled beneficiaries without an Orange mobile money SIM. However, it has come to the attention of the Commission, through the Grievance Redress Mechanism (GRM) led by the ACC, that the incident of stolen SIMs of beneficiaries, especially the elderly, has been on the increase. In order to minimize the possibility of transfers of the benefit to wrong persons, NaCSA and OMFSL are working on putting in place the necessary safeguards and measures. On that note, the Commission and its stakeholders wish to inform the beneficiaries, beneficiary communities, and the public that payments of ECT III targeted beneficiaries have been postponed until further notice. However, targeting of the remaining caseloads will continue as earlier communicated.

Going forward, beneficiaries are advised to be aware of fraudulent individuals out there such as the stealing of Orange Money registered SIMs or Passcodes. Also, there are some people posing as officials of the ECT III program asking for money to get people enrolled for the cash transfers. Kindly note that all officials must have ID cards showing their names and organizations (e.g., NaCSA, ACC, OFMSL). Kindly be alert and take extra care of your SIM and Passcode.

Registered and enrolled beneficiaries, stakeholders and other members of the public with any concerns relating to the ECT III, are kindly encouraged to contact the complaint handling centers established at NaCSA’s district offices supervised by the ACC. Please be assured that your complaints will be received, recorded and resolved accordingly. Furthermore, the Commission and its stakeholders wish to inform the general public that payments will resume once all the assessments and verification with regards to misplaced SIM have been conducted.

Kindly be cautioned that no one should offer or pay anything to anybody to be enrolled for the ECT III benefit. Any attempted extortion or corrupt practice must be reported to the ACC using the toll-free number 515, directly to the ACC through its officials including Community and District Monitors, and any NaCSA staff. We thank you for your understanding and continued interest and confidence in the work of the Commission and its stakeholders.

For further information on this and other matters, please contact Umaru Samai, Project Officer, Information Education and Communication on +23277022709/+23276378993

Sao-Kpato Hannah Isatta Macarthy (PhD)

Commissioner, NaCSA

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