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School feeding: FG trains 42 master cooks on healthy, hygienic meal in Kogi



The Federal Government has trained 42 cooks under the Home Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP) in order to build their capacity and ensure a healthy and safe hygienic environment for pupils, tagged: ”Nationwide Documentation and Training of Master Cooks on tNHGSFP”.

Speaking at the venue in Lokoja, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development (FMHADMSD), Hajia Sadiya Farouq, said the training was to build the capacity of the cooks to ensure safe and healthy meals for the pupils.

The Minister, who was represented by the Nutritional Assistant on NHGSFP, Mrs Susan Simpa, said the 42 participants would go back after the training to their various local governments to train others.

According to her, two cooks were selected from each of the 21 local government of the state, who will in turn train 20 cooks each in their localities.

She noted that the NHGSFP is a component of National Social Investment Programme (NSIP), established by President Muhammad Buhari to bring poor Nigerians out of poverty.

She said that the training would improve the hygiene pattern of NHGSFP implementation, adding that the federal government has also provided quality feeding utensils for the cooks.

Earlier, Mr Suleiman Onyekehi, the NSIP Focal Person, Kogi State, said the idea is to improve on the quality of food and nutritional values being prepared for the pupils, and increase children’s enrollment in school.

Onyekehi, who is also the Special Adviser to the Governor on Special Projects, stressed that the federal government is taking the programme seriously because of its purpose and objectives.

He urged the participants to listen attentively to ensure a thorough compliance with the national guidelines.

”So, I want you to take this training very seriously, and also see the programme as a service to humanity,” he advised.

He said that the NSIP Kogi has recruited 2,933 cooks for the NHGSFP, while over 800 recruited additional cooks are awaiting final approval to accommodate remaining schools and pupils yet to benefit from the programme.

He noted that the delay is as a result of the nationwide pupils enumeration exercise.

He appreciated the Minister for doing her best in bridging the structural gaps for effective performance.

He disclosed that the federal government has approved the increase in cost of meal per child from N70 to N100, but this is yet to be implemented.

He, therefore, noted that the federal government is doing its best to commence the implementation probably when schools resume for third term.

Mrs Fatima Abdulmumin, a participant who spoke on behalf of the Cooks, said the cooking had been nice, adding that their major challenge is the cost.

”The cost per child is N70 but we are hoping the federal government will increase it to N100 as they have promised because things are now very costly,” she said.

Earlier, the minister’s representative, Simpa, handed over aprons and feeding utensils to Onyekehi for onward distribution to the cooks after the training.

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