GIS – 31 March, 2017: Even though Mauritius does not have any natural resources, its population contributes to its development. Education is important for the country to progress and Government wants to invest more in this sector and make education the priority of priorities.
This statement was made yesterday by the Prime Minister, Minister of Home Affairs, External Communications and National Development Unit, Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr. Pravind Jugnauth, during a ceremony organised at the Lunch Room of the National Assembly to hand over the Cash Award of the School Premium Scheme to 206 beneficiaries under the Social Register of Mauritius (SRM).
The ceremony was organised by the Ministry of Social Integration and Economic Empowerment, in collaboration with the National Empowerment Foundation. The Minister of Social Integration and Economic Empowerment, Mr Alain Wong, the Minister of Education and Human Resources, Tertiary Education and Scientific Research, Mrs Leela Devi Dookun-Luchoomun and other eminent personalities were also present.
The Prime Minister congratulated the beneficiaries of the Cash Awards for their efforts and encouraged them to keep on working hard. He added that the School Premium Scheme, proposed in Budget 2016-2017, encourages students from poor families to achieve higher levels of education. The cash awards are as follows: Rs 15 000 for successfully completing Grade 9 level under the nine year schooling; Rs 25 000 for successfully completing the School Certificate level or equivalent vocational certificate; and Rs 35 000 for those successfully completing the Higher School Certificate or equivalent technical qualification.
In addition to the Cash Award, Government has taken several other measures to combat poverty, the PM added. These measures include a monthly subsistence allowance to every adult on the SRM, based on a minimum threshold of Rs 2 720 with a maximum threshold of Rs 9 520 for a family of two adults and three children; disabled children under 15 years of age are now eligible to basic invalidity pension; and the Marshall Plan to combat poverty for the next three years, for which Rs 2.2 billion have been earmarked.
For his part, Minister Wong pointed out that there are 83 beneficiaries of the scheme in Rodrigues and 123 of them in Mauritius. He stated that this Cash Award will help reduce the dropout of students from poor families. Moreover, he added that the Cash Award will be transferred into a savings account created for each beneficiary at MauBank and the withdrawal will only be possible when they reach 18 years old.
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