By Femi Bolaji
Taraba state Office of the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme, NHGSFP, has said more than N50 million of the funds allocated for the project in the state are yet to be accessed.
A State official of the NHGSFP, Idris Goje, in a statement Tuesday, disclosed that the unused funds are from the accounts of deceased cooks, unknown vendors and defaulting cooks.
He also noted that the funds will be repatriated to the Treasury Single Account, TSA, in line with the directive of its National Office.
According to the statement, new measures to sanitize the programme has also been adopted, while defaulting food vendors will be delisted from the programme.
The statement in part reads;” The state office has resolved that the five days penalty for default is cancelled, and any food vendor skipping some days within the school days of serving food shall be delisted from the programme.
“All NHGSFP vendors in Taraba state must also be the one to serve the food in their respective schools/LGA.
“Moreover, no more cooking by proxy and all vendors must identify themselves with their National ID Cards to the school authority for proper attendance taking/signing.”
Goje also described media reports that food vendors in the state are threatening to withdraw from the programme as malicious.
He noted that of the 6043 food vendors in the state, more than100 of them were culpable of excess withdrawal of funds, which warranted the blockage of their bank accounts.
He also explained that the DSS was able to help them recover N1.2 million, which he said is part of the over N50 million to be repatriated to the TSA.