This morning a 79 year old elderly man found his way to our news room after being disturbed with a letter he received today from the Social Security Board. Rupert Saunders was designated as one of 4,000 elderly men and women eligible to receive a monthly noncontributory pension under the poverty alleviation program.

But this morning he received a letter from SSB informing him that he had been cut from the program. The letter stated that the pension has been revoked based on information which showed that Saunders immediate family has adequate means of income in order to support him. It also mentioned that the pension will cease with effect from October 1st.

Now Saunders only used to get one hundred dollars a month, but he says that money goes a long way.

Rupert Saunders
"This morning I was home and they gave me this letter."

Monica Bodden
"A letter from Social Security?"

Rupert Saunders
"I was wondering who is this letter from, but when I open it and read it I found out that they took away my hundred dollars that I get every month. This is not right. I have a lot of family, but no one wants to take care of me."

Monica Bodden
"What is their reason for taking it away from you?"

Rupert Saunders
"I don't know. I don't see why they should take it away."

Monica Bodden
"Tell me how important this hundred dollars a month for me?"

Rupert Saunders
"It is good for me because I don't have anyone living with me. It is good for buying food and pays a small house rent from one of my family."

Monica Bodden
"From reading the letter it says that base on Social Security's investigation - it shows that your family has adequate means of income in order to support you. They are saying that your family could support, so you don't need this hundred dollars."

Rupert Saunders
"They are not supporting me. Even my sister in the US is in the hospital. She is sick now. I think that I am supposed to send something for her, but I don't see how that could work. I just have to pinch the hundred dollars; to buy boledo, drink a beer when I can. I don't have a woman. It is only I in the house and I don't have any light. I get water from my other family living upstairs. I don't have a stove or TV. All I have is a radio and I use candle in my house."

At the height of the programme in 2007 - there were about four thousand recipients - but since then due to attrition, and deliberate cuts like Mr. Saunders, it's been cut down to 2,500 recipients.

Channel 7