Caterers participating in Ghana’s School Feeding Programme have expressed their dissatisfaction with the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, accusing it of being heartless and indifferent to their concerns. The caterers have been demanding the settlement of their outstanding arrears and an increase in the amount allocated per child. Despite the Minister of Gender, Children, and Social Protection proposing a GH¢1.20 increase, the caterers, who have been on strike since schools reopened, find the government’s offer insufficient and unacceptable. They are now demanding GH¢3.50 per child before they resume their services.
In an interview with Dorothy Ofori Sarpong, spokesperson for the caterers in the Ashanti Region, criticized the government for its inaction in response to their demands. She lamented that despite their public outcry, the government seemed unconcerned about their plight, leading the caterers to view them as heartless. Ofori Sarpong emphasized that if the government fails to meet their demands, they will not actively campaign for the NPP in the upcoming 2024 general elections.
The grievances of the caterers in the School Feeding Programme highlight the importance of addressing the concerns of essential service providers. Their demands for outstanding payments and increased remuneration reflect their struggles and the impact on their livelihoods. It is crucial for the government to engage in constructive dialogue with these caterers and find a resolution that acknowledges their contributions while also considering the available resources. Failing to address their concerns not only affects their well-being but may also have political consequences, as they have hinted at withholding support in future elections if their demands are not met.