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Lagos Govt insists on school feeding during COVID-19 lockdown, says they will distribute food to pupils at home

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The Lagos State Government has insisted on continuing with the Federal Government Home Grown School Feeding Programme during COVID-19 lockdown.

Chairman of Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (LASUBEB), Mr Wahab Alawiye-King, while disclosing it on Thursday when he visited food palliative warehouse in the state capital, Ikeja, said they have identified the pupils who will benefit from the programme, will ensure they distribute the food to the pupils at home.

The Chairman, however, stated that the initiative is part of the Presidential directive that the Home Grown School Feeding Programme must continue despite school closure.

Alawiye-King explained that the government agencies involved have been working relentlessly for the past few weeks to ensure that the directives are carried out.

LASUBEB Chairman said: “The programme is under the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Home Grown School Feeding Programme, in collaboration with the Lagos State Government through the Universal Basic Education Board and all stakeholders in the basic education sub-sector.

“The beneficiaries have been identified and verified. We need to understand that the school feeding programme has been running before now; we target it at primary 1-3 pupils in public primary schools. We have gone around using our school vendors and school management board based on data to identify and verify the households that will enjoy the programme,” he buttressed.

“The exercise will be transparent, as international and local organisations are part of the monitoring group involved to ensure that the food palliatives get to the right households, and over 37,589 homes are being targeted for the pilot scheme,” he assured.

Alawiye-King further said: “202 centres are designated for the distribution of food packages which include 5kg of Rice, 5kg of Beans, 2 Rolls of Sachet Tomato Paste, 500ml of Palm and Groundnut Oil, Salt and 12 Eggs.”

Special Adviser to the President on National Home-Grown-School Feeding (NHGSF), Mrs Titilola Adeyemi-Doro, in encouraging the state government, said that the Federal Government is coordinating the process while the State is to take ownership of the Programme and ensure the resources reached the beneficiaries available.

However, Adeyemi-Doro in commanded the Lagos State SUBEB, said they are taking the lead in collaboration with all stakeholders in the education sector, and charged them to do more.

The Lagos state Board Secretary of LASUBEB, Mrs Folusho Ajimoti, responded by stating that that the Board Members, alongside Education Secretaries of each Local Government and food vendors, will form part of the distribution team with relevant stakeholders serving as monitoring groups, and they have held a series of meetings to ensure efficient distribution of the food items. She added that vouchers would soon be given to the various households already identified.

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