The Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC) is urging government to consider the option of decentralising the procurement process of food supply to the various Senior High Schools (SHS) in the implementation of the free SHS policy in the country.
PIAC was of the view that the current arrangement where all schools under the programme resorted to the buffer stock for food supply was not ensuring value for money, explaining that local procurement option would ensure that foods that buffer stocks did not supply could be obtained by the schools locally.
“Our interactions with the school authorities, we sense that they want a system where they could provide their own foods with a local Committee in place to supervise their activities.
“What is key here is that government must put in place system to reduce any possible misappropriation instead of the centralised system in place now,” It further stated.
Mr Eric Defor, a member of PIAC, said these in a media interview yesterday at Jema during an inspection tour to the Bono East Region.
Members of PIAC were in the Kintampo North and South municipalities to inspect projects that had received Annual Budget Funding Amount (ABFA) (oil revenue) for their construction.
Mr Defor said their interaction with the various schools’ management in the region had revealed irregular supply of the right quantity of foods from buffer stock to the schools, thereby affecting quality of food being served to the students.
“In some schools visited, students have to come to the dining hall with their own sugar for breakfast and this is quite unfortunate,” he explained.
Mr Defor said the government must ensure that the schools receive their budgetary allocations timely in order to address challenges affecting the smooth implementation of the free SHS policy.
As part of the five-day tour to the Bono East Region, PIAC would hold public fora to sensitise the people on Ghana’s oil discovery and how the revenues are being used.
FROM DANIEL DZIRASAH, JEMA
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