(BLANTYRE) -- The Malawian government announced last week that it was halting cash allowances to HIV-positive civil service workers after learning of widescale abuse of the system.
The government made $35 monthly payments to 40,000 out of its 170,000 workers. However, they found that some used the money on beer and prostitutes and not for the intended purpose of buying nutritional meals.
BBC reports that a government official said the allowance would be replaced with nutrition bags. Mary Shaba said since the program was introduced in 2007, some falsely claimed HIV status in order to receive the allowance.
Malawi has one of the highest HIV rates in the world with 14 percent of its 13 million population infected with the virus. The disease has cut the country’s life expectancy to 36.
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