School feeding: Caterers’ demand at this time will be challenging to meet – Former MP

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Former Member of Parliament for Okaikwei North, Fuseini Issah has said the demand by some caterers under the National School feeding programme to increase their money at this time of the country’s economic challenges, is not the best.

In his view, although discussions are ongoing on this matter, it will be challenging to meet their demand.

Some of the caterers under the programme have been on strike demanding payment of arrears owed them and an increment in the feeding grant per head.  

Speaking on the New Day show on TV3 Monday June 13, Mr Fuseini Issah said “The issue of the school caterers, last week I did hear on other platforms that payments have been effected so I am still not too sure what we are talking about with the outstanding fees.

“The demands of the caterers to be paid ¢3 per child per day for feeding, I think that this should be looked at because the initial whole thinking around the school feeding programme is also to be able to use local inputs be it food stuffs, labour and all that.

“The price of 97 pesewas being paid is not based on the fact that they are going to feed just one child or they are going to the market with 97 pesewas, it is based on the fact that you are going to do more procurement and all of that. When you break it down then it comes to about 97 pesewas. For them to demand a jump from 97 pesewas mid year like where we find ourselves today, it is going to be very challenging. I am sure there are engagements still happening, I am looking forward to a resolution to to this impasse or this challenge as soon as practicable.”

The management of the school feeding programme in an earlier statement signed by Head of Public Relations, Siiba Alfa, and dated Wednesday, May 25 assured the caterers they would be paid and that the request for an increment in the feeding grants was being worked on.

“Management has noted your request for increment in the feeding grant and is working assiduously on the matter. We are also working hard to settle all arrears, especially 3rd term of 2021 arrears within the shortest possible time. We express our profound appreciation to all the caterers who are providing meals to our beneficiary pupils in spite of the delay in the release of their arrears”, part of the statement said.

Below is the full statement issued earlier…

URGENT NOTICE TO ALL GSFP CATERERS

The attention of the Management of Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) has been drawn to some misconception and misinformation by some persons who are discouraging caterers from cooking for this 2nd term of 2022, claiming Government will not pay them for their services.

We want to state emphatically that:

  1. Provision of meal for 2nd term of 2022 commenced officially on 16th May, 2022 and all GSFP caterers are expected to render cooking services accordingly (Letter dated 10th May 2022 referred)
  2. Government will at all times honour its obligation of paying caterers for meals provided for pupils in every academic term.
  3. Caterers who will cook for the pupils, including this 2nd term of 2022, will receive their payment as expected
  4. Only caterers who will fail to cook for the term will not be paid; and those who will fail to cook for a number of days shall suffer deduction of non-cooking days.
  5. It is therefore NOT TRUE that caterers who will cook for beneficiary children will not be paid.
  6. Consequently, we urge all Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies to ensure that all caterers are cooking in their respective jurisdiction as directed GSFP

Please note: Management has noted your request for increment in the feeding grant and is working assiduously on the matter. We are also working hard to settle all arrears especially 3rd term of 2021 arrears within the shortest possible time. We express our profound appreciation to all the caterers who are providing meals to our beneficiary pupils in spite of the delay in the release of their arrears.

By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana

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