FG SPENDS N292m MONTHLY TO FEED PRIMARY SCHOOLS PUPILS IN DELTA – EXECUTIVE SEC.

The Executive Secretary, Delta State Small, Micro and Medium Enterprises Development Agency, Mrs. Shimite Bello, said on Monday in Asaba, that the federal government spent N292 million for the school children feeding every month.

According to her, a total of 244, 000 pupils of primary 1-3 are being fed each day, pointing out that a total of 2, 150 caterers have been engaged to do the job, but hinted that FG delayed in the release of funds to the caterers.

She also hinted that 300 caterers were yet to be cleared, “but I believe that they are working hard to ensure they attend to the children in their care. A child consumes N70 per day”.

She explained that the caterers have been told to have gardens behind their houses where they can plant seeds given to them to avoid spending the monies met for the feeding of the children on transport to the market for food items.

“We have told them before to have gardens but they didn’t. But now, we have given them the seeds and we are monitoring them. We have a monitoring team on ground and we have gone beyond what they asked us to do”, she added.

Meanwhile, in furtherance of its goal to tackle poverty and hunger, and to create jobs for Nigerians in line with its inclusive growth plan, the Buhari administration’s National Home-Grown School Feeding (NHGSF) Programme is now in 19 states across the federation.

The Presidency listed the states to include; Anambra, Enugu, Oyo, Osun, Ogun, Ebonyi, Zamfara, Delta, Abia, Benue, Plateau, Bauchi, Taraba, Kaduna, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Imo, Jigawa and Niger states.

A statement by the spokesman of the vice president. Laolu Akande, said so far, over five million pupils (5,226,039) in 28,249 schools in these states are currently been fed under the programme, while Kano and Katsina states are expected to be added to the beneficiaries states in the coming weeks.

Also,he noted that over 50,000 cooks are currently engaged under the programme.

He stated that the school feeding programme, which is part of President Muhammadu Buhari administration’s N500 billion National Social Investment Programmes, NSIP, has a target to feed 5.5 million schoolchildren by the end of 2017.

Akande said the School Feeding Programme is collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Health to deliver an integrated deworming programme for pupils in all public primary schools classes 1 to 6 across 17 states currently under the NHGSFP in the country.

He said “At least 243 Local Government Areas will benefit from the deworming exercise in the 17 states, including Abia, Akwa Ibom, Enugu, Niger, Osun, Bauchi, Jigawa, Katsina, Zamfara, Anambra, Benue, Imo, Kano, Kaduna, Ebonyi, Delta and Plateau states.

“The integrated programme, which is scheduled for the first and second week of December in these states, will deliver three different drugs for the treatment of diseases endemic to specific states; particularly schistosomiasis; soil-transmitted helminths and river blindness/onchocerciasis. The drugs to be distributed are Albendazole, Ivermectin and Parazaquintel.

“Supported by the Federal Government, three facilitators would be within the states for the period to achieve these objectives and ensure that the pupils in these states are dewormed.”

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