Some food vendors engaged under the national home grown school feeding programme in Kaduna say there are plans to disengage them because they didn’t vote for the All Progressives Congress (APC) during the last elections.
The vendors from Kaura and Zangon Kataf local government areas said APC officials in their area have threatened to sack them for political reasons.
In separate interviews with NAN, the vendors accused the APC of bringing in their members to replace them.
“The APC officials at Anguwan Rimi ward called us for a meeting and told us that most of us would be sacked from the school feeding programme because we are not members of their political party,” Rifkatu Yashim, one of the vendors in Zangon Kataf, said.
“Some of our replacements have already opened bank accounts and are waiting to resume duties. They told us that they want only APC women to participate in the programme; some women have been asked to open bank accounts and have been told to start wok when school resumes.”
Alice Levi, a vendor in Kaura, accused the APC officials of collecting N1,000 from some of them to retain their names on the list.
“They told us that they were asked to collect the said money from us otherwise our names will be removed from the list,” she said.
Keziah Akut, another vendor, said the politicians had accused them of feeding from APC without doing anything for the party.
“In short, they told us that a new list of vendors has been drafted and that the ministry of education will approve the list as soon as the new administration is inaugurated,” she said.
“We are worried because 16 of us have already been dragged before the education commissioner in Kaduna to be sacked based on an allegation that we did not vote for the APC during the general election.
Bature Bonat, chairman of the school-based management committee (SBMC) in Kaura, said he heard some women would be replaced, but that there had not been any official communication to that effect.
“There are procedures for such replacement, but political affiliation is certainly not one of them,” he said.
Christopher Avong, the APC chairman in Kaura, denied the allegations.
He said he had no knowledge of any plan by the party executives to push for the replacement of the vendors with women loyal to the party.
Ja’afaru Sani, the state’s commissioner for education, also dismissed the allegation, saying no vendor would be replaced, except those who were either not supplying the food or cooking below standard.
“I assure you that there is no plan to replace any vendor, because the APC government is a government of all.
“The only ground for replacement is when a vendor is not doing her job diligently. Those that have absconded or are involved in a fraud will also be sacked. No one will be sacked for political reasons.”