Home | News    Friday 29 May 2020

WFP agrees to fund Sudan Family Support Programme

David Beasley WFP Director General and Sudan Finance Minister Ibrahim al-Badawi hold agreement of Sudan Family Support Programme on 29 May 2020. (WFP photo)May 29, 2020 (KHARTOUM) – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) will support the Sudanese government’s Family Support programme aiming to empower poor families with cash transfer.

The support agreement was signed on Friday by the Sudanese Minister of Finance and Economic Planning (MoFEP) Ibrahim al-Badawi and WFP Sudan’s Representative and Country Director Hameed Nuru in the presence of Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok and the WFP Executive Director David Beasley.

Under the Sudan Family Support Programme, the government will provide direct cash transfers each month to support vulnerable families as part of its efforts to mitigate the effects of the ongoing economic difficulties.

The aid programme is expected to start in the second half of the year with financing from the Government of Sudan and partners.

“The Family Support Programme is one of the Transitional Government’s greatest undertakings and will be a major dividend of the December Revolution. It will provide direct cash transfers to around 80 per cent of Sudanese families to support them through the challenging economic circumstances currently facing Sudan,” said al-Badawi.

The transitional government plans to undertake harsh economic reforms and cut subsidies of basic commodities and fuel to protect vulnerable families

To protect vulnerable households, the government said it would transfer cash to poor people instead of subsidizing commodities which cost more money and encourage smuggling of cheap goods to neighbouring countries.

Also, in January 2020 al-Badawi Monday revealed that his government received international pledges to support his country by about two billion dollars to convert to the direct cash support programme.

The transitional government estimates that 65 per cent of the population live below the poverty line.

However, with the negative impact of the COVID-19 on the economy, the already dire food security situation is likely to worsen due to the closure of nonessential businesses, coupled with rapidly rising food prices.

“The programme will be key to safeguarding people at risk of slipping into extreme poverty,” said Nuru.

He further said the United States through its humanitarian arm, USAID will cover the fees of the operation.

“Our steady partnership with donors like the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is what enables us to provide critical assistance. We are grateful to have such generous partners.”

According to the deal, WFP will support the Government to develop a cash transfer delivery and payments system, and a complaints-and-feedback mechanism including a call centre to support recipients of the programme.

“The platform developed for the Sudan Family Support Programme will allow efficient and accountable digital delivery of a broad range of social protection and other Government services to the People of Sudan,” said Nuru.

(ST)