The Kogi State Office of Social Investment Programme (SIP) on Thursday refuted report from a section of the media that pupils were fed with rotten fish and stale bread in schools under its Home Grown School Feeding Programme (HGSFP) in the state.
Public relations officer, Office of the Special Adviser to the Governor on Multilateral, Donor Agencies and Special Projects, and SIP Focal Person in Kogi, Mr Ahmed Bachido, told newsmen in Lokoja that the reported story was false.
“’There was never a time any pupil in any school was fed with either rotten fish or stale bread because adequate measures and monitoring are being carried out to forestall such anomalies.
‘’The safety of our pupils is important to us, hence the proper attention and monitoring that the office has put in place to ensure that pupils are fed with quality good food at all times,” he said. He said that the pilot phase of the programme was test run in February 2019, and the food menu was carefully followed by all the caterers and the food served to the pupils were perfectly in order as directed and monitored.
He noted that the head of Unit of HGSFP in Kogi State, Hajia Khadijat Karibo has been very effective in her official engagements to ensure that adequate arrangement were put in place for effective implementation of the programme in the state.
“The pilot stage of HGSFP commenced in Kogi State on February 8, 2019, and we have organised several seminars and sensitization programmes for the caterers, food vendors, heads of primary schools, store keepers and other critical stakeholders, to ensure strict adherence to terms and condition of HGSFP operations,” he added.
He said that they have also put adequate measures in place to ensure proper sanction for any caterer, aggregator or vendor, who evades the process, adding that the processes involved in getting the caterers for the programme were duly followed.