‘7.7m pupils in 46,000 schools now benefit from feeding programme’
The Federal Government has said that no fewer than 7.7 million pupils in 46,000 public schools across 24 states of the federation are currently benefiting from the National Home-Grown Feeding Programme (NHGFP).
The programme is also expected to be extended to additional 12 states in the next few months.
The NHGFP National Manager, Abimbola Adesanmi, who disclosed this to journalists yesterday in Abuja at a two-day workshop for FCT stakeholders, said that 3.2 million eggs, 50 tonnes of fishes, 255 cattle slaughtered and millions of tonnes of local rice were consumed across the 24 states so far.
While the Secretary, Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Area Council Secretariat, Adamu Abubakar, expressed delight in the development, the Senior Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment, Ismaeel Ahmed, noted that 30,000 chickens are needed to provide the eggs.
Ahmed expressed optimism that the home-grown feeding programme will provide opportunities not only for poultry farmers but private sector, just as he warned against politicisation of the scheme.
Besides, the FCT Minister, Muhammad Bello, who declared the workshop open, expressed satisfaction on successes recorded in the implementation of other components of social investment programme, especially in the N-Power-N-Teach, N-Agro, N-Health, N-Build Government Enterprise Empowerment Programme (GEEP), State Operations Co-ordinating Unit (SOCU), State Cash Transfer Unit (SCTU), among others.
The minister said 7,616 Abuja residents who benefited from the N-Power programme in 2016 had graduated, while 8,369 prospective beneficiaries that had gone through physical verification for 2017, are awaiting deployment to their various duty posts.
Bello, represented by the FCT Secretary on Social Development Secretariat, Oladimeji Hassan, said: ‘’You are all aware the home-grown school feeding is to provide food for all public primary school pupils in primary 1 – 3 in Nigeria, using food produced and purchased within the country. This will not only add value chain to the local farmers, the food vendors, but will also increase children enrolment in schools and retention.”
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