- The federal government has said the homegrown school feeding programme will start on Thursday, May 14
- As schools remain closed, the federal government said it will provide food for beneficiaries of the school feeding programme while they stay at home
- The programme will commence in Abuja, Lagos and Ogun states before moving to other states of the federation
Barring any last-minute changes, the federal government has said the homegrown school feeding programme will kick off on Thursday, May 14.
Though schools are not open yet due to the coronavirus pandemic, the federal government said it will provide food for beneficiaries of the school feeding programme while they stay at home.
In a statement released on Monday, May 11, the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development said the programme will commence in Abuja followed by Lagos and Ogun states before it is extended to other states.
Legit.ng gathers that the target beneficiaries are children in primary 1 to 3 in public schools participating in the programme.
The ministry said it consulted and collaborated with state governments to identify the distribution of Take-Home Rations (THR) to the households of the children on the programme.
"This is a globally accepted means of supporting children to continue to have access to nutrient rich foods despite disruptions to the traditional channels of school feeding," the ministry explained.
It added that states have been requested to carry out mapping exercises in order to trace the households of the target children using all available data sources including the School-Based Management Boards, community focal persons, cooks on the programme and existing school registers in the LGAs where the schools are domiciled.
The ministry said each household will receive uncooked food items that have been assessed and approved by nutrition experts as adequate for the children.
It further disclosed that 6,000 schools will serve as distribution centres for clusters of communities except in places with unique security challenges.
The ministry said it is getting technical support from the World Food Programme (WFP).
“Each household will receive a Take-Home Ration valued at N4,200 and made up of 5 kg Bag of Rice, 5 kg Bag of Beans, 500 ml Vegetable Oil, 750 ml Palm Oil, 500 mg Salt, 15 pcs of eggs, 140gm Tomato Paste. These rations have been reviewed by nutrition experts to ascertain the nutritional value and benefit to the children," the ministry disclosed.
To ensure transparency, the ministry said it has requested anti-graft agencies and the civil society organisations to monitor the process.
It also urged Nigerians to support the poor and less privileged, adding that the federal government’s resources are insufficient to cater for all.
Another report on the development by Vanguard indicates that the minister, Sadiya Umar-Farouq, is expected to launch the programme at Kuje Central Primary School on the scheduled date.
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Earlier, Legit.ng reported that the African Action Congress (AAC) called on the federal government to immediately halt the proposed feeding of school children at home in collaboration with state governments.
The party claimed the initiative is “ill-conceived, irrational, undigested and not properly thought out.”
The AAC berated the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development for proposing the idea, saying there are better and creative ways to manage the concerns and needs of Nigerians amidst COVID-19 pandemic.
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