The federal government says no fewer than 9.9 million pupils are currently benefiting from its Home Grown School Feeding (HGSF) programme in 56,000 schools across the country.
The Coordinator of National Social Investment Office, Office of the Vice President, Maryam Uwais, disclosed this during a panel discussion at the Nigeria Innovation Policy Unit (PIU) Dissemination meeting in Abuja on Friday.
The event was organised by Nigerian Economic Summit Group in collaboration with National Social Investments Programme.
Mrs Uwais said the HGSF was currently being implemented in 32 states and by September all the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory would be captured under the programme.
Similarly, the coordinator further disclosed that data of beneficiaries had been collated in 34 states for its Cash Transfer programme, while payment was being made to beneficiaries in 25 states of the federation.
She explained that her office had before the commencement of the project, engaged all the ministries concerned to ensure they were carried along for effective implementation.
She called for integration of all similar programmes in the agencies and institutions for more efficient and effective implementation since it was the same objective, to lift Nigerians from poverty.
“There is need for coordination, need to come together and link up with various agencies and institutions together. It is APC government’s programme but there is need to go beyond that.
“We are working to communicate and convince Nigerians that the programme is for all Nigerians and private sector should also key in to understand what we are doing and support it,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that other panelists at the event suggested for national dialogue to make the project state owned to ensure its sustainability.
The panelists also agreed on the need to link the programme with ministries and agencies of the government, to ensure it was properly captured in the budget.