The School Feeding Programme (SFP) is to take on board 8,500 pupils in new schools for the 2008/2009 academic year in the Upper West Region.
The Programme is already providing food for 6,503 pupils from old schools, bringing the total number of pupils that would benefit from it in the region to 15,003.
Mr. Angaamwine Salifu Siita, the Regional Coordinator of the SFP, who disclosed these to GNA at Wa, said it would cost government 4,800.96 Ghana Cedis to feed the pupils.
He mentioned Sawobee, Duu, Nako and Balekpong primary schools as some of the new schools whose pupils would benefit from the programme this year.
Mr. Siita said government had released 9,383 Ghana Cedis for the feeding of pupils from the new schools.
He said the programme had brought about an increase in the enrolment of children into schools in the region, creating congestion in the classrooms.
Mr. Siita said “ For instance a primary school at Sorbelle in the Sissala West District that used to have a population of 283 pupils now has 900 pupils”.
He said the SFP had collaborated with the World Food Programme (WFP) to provide fortified corn soya blend, oil and iodated salt for the pupils but explained that the items were not forthcoming as anticipated.
Mr. Siita appealed to the WFP to deliver the food items on time, saying: “the delay in supply sometimes caused the commodities to go bad when they finally got to the schools”.
He also urged authorities of the SFP to release feeding grants to the schools on time and provide means of transport to its regional offices to enhance the operations of the programme.