15.05.2008 Education

Upper West Schools receive part payment for Food contractors

15.05.2008 LISTEN

Senior High Schools in the Upper West Region have received part of their feeding grants to settle 28 per cent of their indebtedness to food suppliers in the region.
Mr George Hikah Benson, Upper West Regional Minister told the Food suppliers at a meeting on Wednesday that the amount though small, should enable them to meet part of their commitments to their creditors so that they could resume their supplies to the institutions.
Students of Senior High Schools in the region have stayed at home since schools reopened after the holidays because of government's inability to release the feeding grants.
As a result, the food suppliers stopped supplying the schools until the amounts of money owed them are paid.
Mr Benson said the government was aware of their plight and was making every effort to make sure that they were paid all the moneys owed by the schools.
"The government is committed to the education of every Ghanaian child that is why it introduced the capitation grant and the School feeding programme”.
“We are very sensitive to the situation students in second cycle institutions in the North now found themselves and will make sure you are paid"
He pleaded with them to look at the current plight of the students and reconsider their decision to stop supplying the food, especially as students of the southern schools were attending classes.
The contractors however said it would be very difficult for them to continue supplying because they owed the farmers and other food suppliers, who were chasing them for their money.
They urged the school authorities to pay them the little amount that they had received from the government before they could think of their next line of action.
One of the schools, Lassie-Tuolu Senior High School in the Wa West District has not met its commitments to the contractors since June last year, while most of the other schools had not paid for the second term supplies.
Wa Islamic and the Jirapa Saint Francis Senior High Schools are the only schools, which have no arrears to settle with the contractors.

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