The School Feeding Caterer for the Ohwimase Anglican Basic School in the Kwadaso Municipal Assembly of the Ashanti Region, known only as Hajia, has been sacked for preparing sub standard foods to the children.
Her relief of post came in the mist of the school children’s protest and dumping of their Wednesday’s lunch into dustbins for poor quality meal after series of complaints lodged against the sub standard meals served them.
The Ashanti Regional Coordinator of the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP), Madam Mary Duodu, confirming the sack on Otec FM’s political evening shows’ ‘Dwabrem’, on Thursday, told the host, Agya Owusu Ansah, that her (Hajia) contract has been terminated.
She explained that “We have warned her many times to improve upon the quality of the meal but she won’t listen. We don’t want her to continue because we dont want to compromise the quality of the meal so a new caterer would be commissioned to take over from Monday.”
Sources indicated that Hajia cooked improved rice and ‘kontomire’ stew on Thursday for the children but was asked not to serve since she has been sacked.
Asked what she could do to sanitize the programme following complaints from the public about the poor services delivery, she said “it will be difficult to do so as most of the caterers are affiliated to the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), making them untouchable, though most of them cooking skills are suspect”
Caterers of the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) have been warned not to take undue advantage of the ban placed on fishing activities by the Government, to deny the children the right amount of protein in the food they prepare.
The acting National Coordinator of the GSFP, Dr. Gertrude Quashigah who issued the warning in an interview in Accra, advised the caterers to consider soy as another form of protein that would enable them to prepare nutritious meal for the beneficiary pupils.
She noted, Textured Soy Product (TSP) which is made into chewable meat or chicken, would serve as chicken or fish replacement and provide the needed protein for the children and keep them healthy.
The Textured Soy Protein is a healthy and high-quality protein source that contains all essential amino acids needed for growth, and comes without fat and has no cholesterol and with little or no saturated fat.
Already, caterers under the programme have been introduced to the use of Textured Soy Product, which is being produced locally by YEDENT.
According to Mrs. Quarshigah, the TSP, for instance, was more affordable and more convenient for the caterers to use, as compared to chicken or fish.
“One kilo of Textured Soy Protein sells at GH₵20 or GH₵25 and it can be used to cook for more than 100 children. So if you buy let say 10 kilos of the soy you can use it to cook for more than 1000 children. This means that those caterers with high number of children will highly benefit from using the TSP, and they can even mix it with eggs and vegetables to make it nutritiously balanced; with any accompaniment like banku, rice, yam, plantain or eba,” she said.