The School Feeding Caterers Association has chosen to stop providing cooking services as of Monday, May 16 due to an insufficient school feeding grant, according to the group.
They have sworn to refrain from cooking until the government raises the current food handout from $0.97 to $3 per child.
Beneficiaries of the School Feeding Program will not be fed until the remaining issues are resolved.
Juliana Cudjoe, the Association’s Chairwoman, told JoyNews that at the present price allocation, they are losing a lot of money cooking hot meals for the kids.
She underlined that, given the current economic challenges, the existing allocation of 0.97 is insufficient to provide adequate school kid services.
They have literally been working magic to stay in business, according to her.
“We’re not going to cook until they get back to us.” We require payment, as well as an increase. As a result, we won’t be cooking on Monday,” she explained.
Meanwhile, the School Feeding Secretariat has promised to look into their concerns and has invited the leadership of the Association to a meeting on Monday.
“They have made their demands. So, the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection and the School Feeding management will develop a comprehensive statement on that.”
This new development comes after the management of the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) announced last week that the resumption of cooking services in all beneficiary schools will begin on May 16.
A notice issued on May 9, added that the caterers would be paid the third term of the 2021 academic year and other arrears in due course.
Addressing Parliament on March 2, 2022, the caretaker Gender Minister, Cecilia Abena Dapaah, announced the suspension of the Programme to allow debts owed to caterers to be cleared
“Mr Speaker, currently the expansion of the programme is on hold. However, we are clearing all arrears of caterers and putting measures to ensure effective and efficient service delivery to all beneficiary schools and the caterers.
“We are also putting in place a management information system to enhance efficiency and effectiveness of the system. We shall surely inform this august House when we are ready to expand the programme to cover additional schools,” she said.
In December last year, the Minister reassured us that the remaining arrears owed to the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) caterers would soon be settled.
She noted that all the necessary data and figures had been worked on and submitted to the Controller and Accountant General for the release of funds to pay the caterers.