The Ghana School Feeding Secretariat has apologised profusely to school feeding caterers for government failure to pay the arrears owed them.
According to the Head of Public Relations at the Ghana School Feeding Secretariat, Alfa Siba, the current state of the economy has delayed their payment but government is working assiduously to ensure the release of funds for the payment of their arrears.
Some caterers in the Ashanti Region participating in the government’s school feeding program went on strike on Tuesday, April 4, demanding payment of arrears and an increase in the feeding grant.
The decision to withdraw their services comes after the caterers threatened to lay down their tools following the government’s failure to pay arrears owed them.
The caterers who are also demanding an increment in the amount the government pays per child daily from ninety-seven pesewas to three Ghana cedis say the current amount is unsustainable because of the current state of the economy and its accompanying high cost of food commodities.
The caterers in their bid to get authorities to address their concerns petitioned the Ashanti Regional Minister on Monday, 3rd April 2023, but they however expressed dissatisfaction with his response to their concerns as they were ordered to leave.
But speaking in an interview, Alfa Siba said the funds will be released soon.
“We are engaging the relevant stakeholders and the caterers to see how best we can resolve the issue. Just last week, we paid the second term of the 2022 academic year to all the districts.
So, we are appealing to the caterers to rescind their decision not to cook while we continue the engagements,” he assured.
He added that all efforts have been made to increase the feeding grant.