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5.5m pupils to benefit in school feeding –FG

Olamide Babatunde

A total of 5.5 million school children in the country will benefit from the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP) by the Federal Government.

The Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Social Protection, Mrs. Maryam Uwais, made this known during an interactive session with media executives in Lagos .The scheme is one of the N-SIP plans of the federal government aimed at addressing “ concerns of social security which in the last few years has been critica,l, she explained.

According to her, “10.5 million Nigerian children are out of school and 20% of the World’s out-of-school Children are in Nigeria. The National Home Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP) will feed 5.5million school children with nutritious meals. There are also secondary beneficiaries of the programme such as the cooks whom we pay directly and farmers who supply the foodstuff.”

The scheme is one of the N-SIP plans of the federal government aimed at addressing “ concerns of social security which in the last few years has been critical”, she explained. Nigerian graduates currently unemployed equally will be empowered in the N-Power scheme designed to engage them productively.

The special adviser disclosed that, “Every year 6.8 million Nigerians enter the unemployment market and Nigeria needs to ensure that 11.9 people are graduated out of poverty per minute, to escape extreme poverty. Today, Nigeria has a deficit of 6.8 people every minute. We need inclusive growth that will enable economic recovery and growth of the country. N-Power is a job creation and youth employment programme and our targets are 500,000 unemployed graduates; 100,000 artisans; 8 regional innovation hubs for one million primary and secondary students which offer access to computer, training in animation, coding and programming.”

Explaining the details further on the impact of N-SIP, she stated economic overdependence on crude oil; absence of critical policies driving inclusive growth, lack of credible data base in an increasing demographic profile as challenges that need to be tackled to achieve economic stability and support for the vulnerable.  “It is imperative on us to take these actions or we expect that poverty rates will continue to grow,” she warned.

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