The National Food Buffer Stock Company (NAFCO) says that the threat of Senior High Schools (SHS) closing down for lack of food is not the result of non-payment to food suppliers.
According to Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mr Hanan Abdul-Wahab, food had been supplied to SHSs in the country, as GH₵68 million was spent in paying the first batch of suppliers during the First Semester of the 2019/2020 academic year
Speaking at a press conference in Accra on Friday, Mr Abdul-Wahab stated that NAFCO was unaware of any official complaint of non-payment by any supplier.
“If anyone claimed that the company owed them, then it could either be that the person was yet to complete the supplies or was done with it and had filed the Store Receipt Vouchers (SRVs) but was still within the 60-day period,” he added.
Mr Abdul-Wahab stated that only licensed suppliers could supply to the various boarding second cycle institutions with stated quantities and would only be paid after delivery was done.
“With regards to the current semester,” he added, “most of our suppliers were done with their supplies by December 2019, and had filed the necessary documents with us and by our calculations, they are still within the stipulated timeframe of 60 days, and they would have their payments when the time is due.”
He noted that the company’s contribution to the success of the Free SHS programme could not be overemphasized, as they bought directly from farmers into their warehouses for onward supply to the schools.
Mr Wahab stressed that the company had equally offered enhancements to its food processors such as those engaged in palm oil, gari, flour, tom brown and cocoa powder.
“These enhancements have sustained institutions such as the once-ailing Cocoa Processing Company (CPC) and our activities have generated huge direct and indirect employment opportunities,” he added.
He cautioned the media houses to be vigilant and circumspect when disseminating news stories since food was a security issue and when not handled well could have dire implications.
BY YUNUSAH ESSANDOH