The Federal Government has begun biometric data capturing of 560,000 pupils from 2,632 primary schools benefitting from the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP) in Niger state.
The honourable Minister of Humanitarian Affairs Sadiya Umar Farouq represented by Hajiya Fatima Bisallah, Team Leader of the enumeration exercise from the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, disclosed this during the monitoring exercise in Minna.
According to the Minister, the essence of the capturing and enumeration of pupils was to ensure transparency, accountability and sustainability of the programme.
“This is part of the FMHADMSD mandate of striving that every Nigerian in need receives the support they need through our social protection mechanisms. So as you can see the NSIP are designed for people who need that additional support and boost to ensure they can participate fully in our collective nation-building efforts”.
She said the exercise was a physical verification to capture and get accurate biometric data of pupils and cooks in the state in order to scale up the programme to include more pupils.
“The exercise is to know the exact figure of the pupils benefitting from the programme as well as have their data base to enable us scale up the number of pupils,. ” she said.
She said the ministry was collaborating with the National Orientation Agency (NOA) and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) to engage their staff and corp members.
She added that the security challenges in part of the state would not hinder the exercise as appropriate measures had been put in place to cover the no-go-areas.
Also, Mallam Hamza Audu, the state Director of NOA in Niger, said the agency has fully sensitised stakeholders and communities to ensure the success of the exercise in the state.
Mrs. Amina Gu’ar, Focal Person of Social Investment Programme in Niger (SIP), expressed satisfaction with the quality of food being served to pupils by the vendors.
She said that about 560,000 pupils from 3,032 schools were benefitting from the programme in the state with over 5000 persons engaged as food vendors.