The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouq, says the government has paid suppliers of foodstuffs and cooks under the home-grown school feeding programme for January 2020.
According to her, this was to ensure that feeding the 9.9 million pupils in the participating states and the FCT starts immediately schools resume in the next two weeks.
The minister noted that the payment covered the cost of feeding pupils in the 33 participating states.
She said the funds were released in December to give the suppliers and cooks adequate time to procure and stock foodstuffs to ensure that pupils eat their meals timely.
“We believe that paying these funds early is critical to the success of the programme. We do not want any hitches, and we want to ensure that the school children are fed on time and without any excuses,” she said.
The minister warned that the government would not accept any drop in the nutritional quality of the meals given to the children.
She said the government has gladly received reports of improved attendance in schools and improved hygiene among the pupils.