An Annual Performance Meeting was chaired by Minister of State and Chairperson BISP, MNA Marvi Memon at BISP Secretariat. The meeting focused on the achievements of BISP during last year. Chairperson BISP, Secretary Ms. Yasmeen Masood, all the departmental and regional Director Generals discussed the way forward in order to make BISP an exemplary social safety net program for the world.

During the meeting, Chairperson BISP stated that BISP, under the current Government, has come a long way in terms of budgetary allocations, operational capacity, new initiatives, payment mechanisms and state of the art technological solutions.

Presentations were made by all the departments of BISP highlighting their achievements and future plans.

Realizing the need of updating data through fool proof targeting tools, BISP has already launched the pilot phase of poverty survey since June 2016 in Haripur. Pilot phase will be completed in 16 districts across country by February 2017. Pilot phase will be followed by the national roll out of resurvey to be completed by March 2018. The participants were apprised that for the first time in history of Pakistan, such a large scale survey is being conducted through tablets in order to avoid any inclusion and exclusion errors. Hiring of firms for review of targeting process, Data Sanity Exercise and Case Management System for the current survey will address the issue of fake beneficiaries.

The participants were informed that the de-crediting and re-crediting policies for the bank accounts of beneficiaries have been revised in order to ensure cash transfer for valid beneficiaries.  Currently more than 94% payments are being made through technology based payment mechanism. Biometric based payments have already started in Larkana that would be expanded throughout Pakistan in a phased manner in the coming years and this will ensure more transparency.

It was highlighted that for the purpose of transparency, eliminating middleman culture and facilitating beneficiaries, BISP has developed a biometric based withdrawal system with more than 25,000 touch points across the country.

It was presented that BISP has achieved the target of 5.3 million eligible beneficiaries under Unconditional Cash Transfer program and enrolled 1.3 million children in schools under Waseela-e-Taleem by June 2016. The organization targets to enroll 2 million children by Dec 2016. BISP has established 50,000 BISP Beneficiary Committees (BBCs) in 32 districts to mobilize women for child education, immunization, women health and encourage women against violence. BISP E-commerce has been launched to promote handicrafts made by beneficiaries, so they may graduate out of poverty through online sale of their products.

Manifesting zero tolerance against corruption and fraud, seven cases of different nature from the field have been forwarded to FIA. 7,000 fraudulent mobile numbers involved in fake SMS have been blocked and law enforcement agencies have been requested to initiate action against them. Around 10,000 dead beneficiaries have been identified which saved Rs. 40 million in the last tranche of 2015-16. Moreover, the creation of a Vigilance Cell is underway for continuous review of systems and procedures. A new Audit department has already been set up which has been giving periodic reports to ensure transparency.

BISP has launched its new Communication Outreach Strategy that includes street theatres to illustrate eligibility criteria and key messages on Waseela-e-Taleem, women empowerment, social and health issues for beneficiaries. The initiatives of ‘Sisters in Success’ and ‘BISP Empowers Talk’ focus on encouraging idea generation, success transfer and motivation for beneficiaries to overcome and graduate out of poverty. On weekly basis, Chairperson BISP takes live radio calls for grievance redressal against complaints of beneficiaries.

Development partners of BISP including ADB, WB and DFID are providing support to BISP in achieving its targets. The performance of BISP under 12th IMF Review has been termed highly satisfactory.