The Niger State government has suggested that the school feeding programme should be extended to primary four to six pupils as the federal government targets five million new beneficiaries.
The secretary to the state government, Ibrahim Ahmed Matane, made the suggestion while receiving representatives of the minister of humanitarian affairs and social development, Hajiya Sadiya Farouk, who were in the state for enumeration of beneficiaries of the programme.
While assuring that the state government would continue to give necessary support for the success of the programme in the state, he urged the federal government to expand the programme.
“Feeding some pupils and leaving others out can create demotivation and create issues among the pupils, let the programme be redesigned in a way that every primary pupil will be part of it,” he said.
On the statistics of the benefitting schools in the state, the programme’s focal person in the state, Hajiya Amina Gu’ar, said 2,087 schools were currently participating out of 3,038 schools.
The minister who was represented by Mr Hezekiah Sunday, an assistant director in the ministry, said the programme had employed 200, 000 people, including 100,000 cooks and more than 100,000 small holder farmers through the value chain. Hajiya Farouk said President Muhammadu Buhari had given the ministry the directive to enumerate the beneficiaries and look at scaling up the number of the pupils benefiting.