Caterers, who were recruited by management of the Ghana School Feeding programme in the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District to prepare one hot meal for JHS final year students last year are threatening to embark on a demonstration in protest against arrears owed them.
According Mr. Abubakari Mahama, a caterer of the one hot meal program, he said they were six persons who selected by the Sawla DCE to provide food to some selected schools within district last year during the era of the covid-19 pandemic.
“We haven’t been paid since last year, only for them to say they will pay me two cedis fifty pesewas instead of the actual amount of three cedis fifty pesewas to the blind side of my colleagues, which I think didn’t agree to because that will amount to betrayal of my colleagues,” Abubakari told Abdul Fatawu on Yagbon Radio morning show on May, 20, 2021.
According to him, they have made all the necessary contacts and efforts to get their monies paid has proved futile.
“When we demand for payment last year we were told to exercise restraint because we were in elections period, now the elections are over but we haven’t been paid till date”, he added.
Meanwhile, the Savannah Regional Coordinator for the School Feeding Programme, Hajia Sofia Mahama in a reaction to the concerns of the caterers said that all lists that are on contract directly from school with issues are almost sorted out.
“So if you are not getting your pay, you contact the DCE or the Zonal Coordinator for the SFP in your district to file your data to Accra”, she said.
She also said other challenges that include conflicting data on accounts and identity problem are seriously dealt with.
She encouraged that any one who has issues with payments to follow the appropriate channels and get their issues addressed.
“I Sofia don’t pay beneficiarise of the program but what I only do is to handle the paper work and process such to Accra to effect payments”, she indicated.
The president of Ghana, Nana Akufo Addo, addressing the nation on Sunday 16th August, 2021 said all 584,000 final year Junior High School (JHS) students across the country are to receive one hot meal each day.
According to the President, the decision stems from complaints from students about going hungry in an attempt to fully comply with COVID-19 preventive protocols.
“As a result of reports I have received that some final year JHS students are going hungry in complying with COVID-19 protocols, I have just instructed the Minister for Gender and Social Protection to begin preparation to ensure that as from 24th August up to 18th of September, all 584,000 final year JHS students and 146,000 staff both in public and private schools be given one hot meal a day.
This is to ensure full observation of COVID-19 safety protocols”. The President stated in his address on measures taken by the state to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.