The Rt Hon Speaker of Parliament, Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin has directed five committees to probe the National Food Buffer Stock Company and School Feeding Programme activities.
He said the five committees, Education, Gender, Children and Social Protection, Health, Food and Agriculture as well as Finance must report to Parliament the findings and recommendations on the feasibility and sustainability of the programmes of the five institutions before the end of October this year.
He said the school feeding programme provided the great potential to accelerate the nation’s progress towards the attainment of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on hunger, poverty and malnutrition.
Delivering an official communication on the floor of Parliament on the NFBSC and the GSFP today, Mr Bagbin said It was therefore critical that the House addressed issues affecting the efficient implementation of the programs as matters of national priority.
He explained that a number of people who supply food to the institution had also threatened to terminate their contracts entirely due to non-payment of arrears by the government for a quiet period of time.
Mr Bagbin told the House that he was personally aware of the extent to which the non-payment of these arrears was affecting school enrolment and attendance, particularly in rural communities.
“We have all accepted the truism children and youth are the wealth of a nation. The situation we are in now affects the vulnerable school children and future leaders of this country,” he said.
Expressing worry over how political leaders were prioritizing political development over economic growth, Mr Bagbin said, he paid a surprise visit to the National Food Buffer Stock Company and the School Feeding Program Secretariat about two weeks ago and realized some of these challenges and that, the visit has helped him understand and obtain first-hand information on the state of affairs, as well as assess the situation on the ground.