House of Rep Probes School Feeding Programme

There are growing concerns by the House of Representative Committee on Public Account that some private schools may have benefited in the Home Grown Feeding Programme (HGFP) which is supposed to be strictly for Public Schools.

In the public hearing presided over by the Chairman of the Committee, Wole Oke, Speaker of the House of Representative, Femi Gbajabiamila, was embroiled that some private schools may have been included in the school feeding programme.

The Statistician General of the Federation and Special Assistant to President Muhammadu on HGFP Yemi Kale, while answering questions from the Committee, denied having details of the programme , and also could not confirm if the programme is for both Public and Private schools,

However, Special Adviser to the President on the School Feeding Programme Dr. Dotun Adebayo said the process of selecting the schools include the list submitted by the department of states.

“We specifically adhere public primary schools at the time of the engagement, the list provided was actually the list given by the states for them to validate. It is expected that all the schools provided by the states are all public schools, which is what is communicated to the states, and which is also what is in the memorandum of understanding.

Adebayo told the committee that the NBS has only printed out the names of the beneficiaries in three states and has not done the total enumeration of all of them. He said: “We have details of the schools but particulars of the benefiting children are with the state governments. We don’t have the details because it is part of the MoU we signed with the states,” adding that “34 states and the Federal Capital Territory are participating while Kwara and Bayelsa States are yet to be enrolled.

“The two states have not met the criteria for participating in the programme, which include a commitment from the state government to the success of the programme. We can’t pay money outside the framework of the programme. Any state that did not meet the requirement will be left out of the programme. Presently, we budget N70 per child. It is not our intention to exempt any state from the programme. Like I said, communication has been made to state governments over the years on the programme and no state is left out.”

from the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), such as the budget approvals for the scheme right from inception, as well as the list of state schools, locations, month According to Mr Adebayo, States Government are held responsible for the data they provide, and are liable to refund the Federal Government if the data is false.

The lawmakers are worried that schools in their constituency may not have benefitted in the programme. Hon. Wole Oke, frowned at the breach of the Public Procurement Act, and demanded relevant authorisations th by month, year by year details of all allocations and expenditure.

Mr. Dotun Adebayo was also directed by Oke to furnish the House with details of the cooks, states, locations of the benefitting schools as well as the over 9million children in 84,000 school across the country that have benefited from the programme.


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