Ghana: Caterers Warned Over Poor Food Quality in School Feeding

Mr John Kofi Donyina, the Techiman South Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) has warned that the contracts of caterers who failed to meet the required standard of the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) would be terminated.

He said any caterer whose services fell below expectation implied working against the realisation of the set goals of the GSFP

The MCE explained that the GSFP formed part of the government's pro-poor intervention programmes aimed at improving attendance and retention of pupils in basic schools located in deprived communities

Mr Donyina gave the warning in Techiman in the Bono East Region when he was speaking at a meeting organised by the Women's Integrated Development Organisation (WIDO) to inform the public about the findings of a research project on the GSFP it recently carried out at schools in selected communities in the Techiman municipality.

The GSFP was again designed to ensure upsurge in domestic food production and consumption and to increase incomes of poor rural communities in response to the first and second Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on eradicating extreme poverty.

The meeting, attended by traditional rulers, head teachers, caterers, cooks and staff of the Municipal Assembly was also to identify the concerns of parents, pupils and the general public on the GSFP to see the best way forward for better quality service delivery to pupils.

WIDO is a local non-governmental organisation that works towards the elimination of social and economic inequalities experienced by women in the rural areas.

Mr Donyina urged head teachers to cooperate with the caterers for the continuous and smooth implementation of the programme to ensure that well-prepared balanced diets were served to nourish and stimulate proper cognitive development of the pupils to enhance learning.

The MCE said that could be achieved if the head teachers and the programme coordinators were more active to do proper monitoring and effective supervision for "the best food in terms of quality and quantity to be served to benefit the pupils".

Mr David Bagonluri Paapa, the Chief Executive Officer of WIDO said teachers who participated in the project testified that the programme had significantly influenced enrolment and retention of pupils and consequently effectiveness of teaching and learning had been enhanced.

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