By Blessing Bature
The Federal Executive Council (FEC), on Thursday, approved the National Home-Grown School Feeding Policy.
In a statement Signed by the Dr Nasir Sani- Gwarzo, Permanent Secretary said as it contained in the policy document, the Federal Government School Feeding Programme is to provide one nutritious meal every school day to all primary school pupils in Nigeria with the objectives of improving the health of school age children, increase their enrolment, retention and completion rate in the primary school.
Gwarzo informed that the purpose of the National Home-Grown School Feeding Policy is to strengthen ownership and commitment of the programme at the federal and state levels of government, key sectors, and relevant stakeholders.
He noted that the policy is to provide guidance for the continuous implementation and sustainability of the programme, by establishing a solid political and financial foundation for school feeding in the medium-to-long term; establish a framework to promote continuous collaboration across the Multisectoral stakeholders and relevant key actors so that the School Feeding Programme can be integrated as a standalone national development framework of policies and strategies and to ensure that healthy and nutritious school meals are served in primary schools in an efficient and consistent manner, and school meals increasingly benefit smallholder farmers and develop local economies especially at the community level.
The Policy also ensures that the foreseen benefits of the NHGSFP are achieved continuously and sustainably by providing enhanced guidance for the adequate implementation of the programme while providing criteria for future sustainable financing of the NHGSFP in Nigeria.
” In addition, the Programme should reach children in pre-primary education; Out of school children under the Alternate School Programme (ASP) and other vulnerable children.
“The Policy has also provided for an effective Monitoring and Evaluation Mechanism for accountability and accuracy; effective management; as well as result-based monitoring”.