The Federal Government has announced plans to spend the sum of N999 million daily to feed about 10 million pupils in its National Home Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP) across the country.
This was made known by the Team Lead of NHGSFP, Aishatu Digil, at a stakeholders’ meeting on disbursement modalities for the review of the cost of feeding in the programme in Abuja.
Digil said that the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq, got the approval to spend N100 daily on the feeding of each pupil in the programme.
This is an increase of N30 from the N70 that was being spent on the feeding of each person under the programme.
What the Team Lead of NHGSFP is saying
Digil pointed out that 9,990,862 pupils from primary one to three in the programme would now be fed with N100 daily for 20 days in a month, which would amount to N999,086,200 million daily.
She said, “Before this, we were feeding school children with N70 per child, per meal. This was since 2016, but the President has approved N100 upward review.
“We have all stakeholders like the World Food Programme, National Bureau of Statistics, National Orientation Agency, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, Ministries of Agriculture, Education and others to deliberate on the modalities of disbursements.
“We are here basically to look at how best we can realise the benefits of the programme based on the new approved cost to improve the standard and quality of the meal and menu for the children.
“The breakdown of the N100 is as follows; N70 is for the cost of all food items except egg, N14 for the cost of egg to be implemented through the state structures in partnership with the Poultry Association of Nigeria.
“We are planning of having ‘Egg Wednesday’, where each child in the programme will be given one egg each every Wednesday.
“N10 stipends for cooks, N5 and N6 for micronutrient fortification, payable to cooks and one naira for quality assurance, payable to supervisors, which is optional.’’
Digil said the programme would ensure the elimination of poor implementation practices, adding that the ministry was looking out for reforms.
She said, “After this meeting, we will collate inputs from stakeholders and present them to the minister so that we will implement the reviewed feeding cost in the next feeding circle, which starts this month.’’
Meanwhile, the National Resource Person of the National Social Investment Programme, Umar Bindir, said the programme was not the responsibility of the Federal Government alone.
He said that to implement the procedure of deploying the N30 that made it N100 in effective feeding of school children, the agency was necessary to consult with stakeholders.
The National Home Grown School Feeding Programme is a government-led programme that aims to improve the health and educational outcomes of public primary school pupils. It uses farm produce locally grown by smallholder farmers to provide children with nutritious mid-day meals every school day.
The program aims to improve the enrolment of primary school children in Nigeria and reduce the current dropout rates from primary school.
Around July 2021, the Federal Government announced that it will enrol an additional 5 million pupils into its NHGSFP by 2023 with the new intakes adding to the existing over 9 million pupils, who are already benefiting from the programme.