NO fewer than 834,000 primary school pupils in Katsina State are benefiting from the federal government home-grown school feeding programme.

The special adviser to the state governor on economic empowerment and social intervention, Abdulkadir Mamman Nasir, who revealed this to newsmen in Katsina, said the programme covered 2,722 primary schools selected across 34 local government areas, LGAs.

He explained that various committees are set up at ward level for selection and screening food vendors in order to ensure the success of the programme.

Nasir said the setting of the committee is to avoid using politics in the selection of the vendors, adding that the committee approved and forwarded the names to his office.

He said that, so far, about 10,200 food vendors are participating in the programme.

On conditional cash transfer financed by the federal government, Nasir said the government has introduced mobile money agents at ward level to ensure assistance reached the beneficiaries without any hitch.

He said the introduction of the agents was necessary following fraud uncovered during the disbursement of the assistance to the beneficiaries.

“Henceforth, the beneficiaries of the programme will collect the assistance through a mobile money agent, instead of paying them cash,” he said.

According to him, the programme currently being implemented in twelve local governments will soon extend to 34 LGAs.

Nasir explained that targeted 500,000 households will benefit from the programme covering the entire state.

In an effort to minimize poverty, and boost economic activities in the state, he said the government has so far disbursed N2billion to unemployed youth, women, petty traders, vulnerable groups among others.