Amina Musa, Niger state commissioner for women affairs, says 200 crates of egg and tubers of yam meant for the homegrown school feeding programme have been stolen.
While briefing journalists in Minna on Thursday, the commissioner said a desk officer involved in the programme was caught with the crates of eggs meant for pupils in Bosso local government area of the state.
Another desk officer in the same local government was said to have been caught diverting several tubers of yam meant for the programme.
A few months ago, the federal government sacked two top officials of the programme for similar sabotage and directed that the scheme should be transferred to the ministry of women affairs.
Musa, who did not disclose the identity of the culprits, said they have been handed to the security agencies for investigation and possible prosecution.
She said: “My ministry has organised stakeholders’ meeting to ensure elimination of challenges and I have also warned vendors to desist from stealing food and other condiments.
“We also gathered that some tubers of yam and rice were stolen thereby reducing the ration for schools. Luckily, we eventually discovered and recovered the items.”
The commissioner said over 560,499 pupils benefited from the programme in the state while 4,929 food vendors were engaged, adding that N392m was allocated to the state by the presidency.
She said the free feeding programme also led to an increase in school enrolment of pupils in the state.
The programme, she said, has also boosted the economic empowerment of farmers and women in the state.