Following the increase in the cost of feeding a public primary school pupil from N70 to N100 per day, the Federal Government will now be spending N1bn daily to feed 10 million pupils across the country.
The FG made this known during a two-day national consultative meeting on public food procurement in the context of Nigeria’s National Home-Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP) on Wednesday, February 23, 2022.
The programme, which domiciles in the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development was initiated to provide a meal daily for pupils in year one to three in public primary schools.
The National Coordinator, National Social Investments Programme, Umar Bindir, while speaking on the sideline of the event on Wednesday confirmed that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the increase.
He said, “When we started in 2016, that was before COVID-19, we had experienced difficulty with the implementation of the N70/child. We had made presentations as the (humanitarian) minister passionately made submissions to Mr. President.
“And Mr. President has graciously approved that we should raise the feeding (cost) from N70 to N100 per child. And the implementation of this programme has now commenced.”
On concerns observed in the school feeding programme, Bindir said, “There are issues where the formulae for the menu in many cases are not consistently adhered to, and so on and so forth. However, these are things that are natural when you have a big programme of this nature covering 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
“We are feeding over 10 million children nationwide and you are bound to experience one or two hiccups here and there. But we are strengthening our monitoring and evaluation system and digitising the processes of delivery.”
He added that the ministry was working to ensure that payments to cooks continue to go directly to the cooks and at the same time engaging non-governmental organisations to participate in the verification and monitoring of the process.