Students and teachers in South Sudan have warned that the suspension of UN food aid may lead thousands of youngsters to drop out of school this year.
Due to a budget constraint, the UN World Food Programme (WFP) said on Tuesday that food rations will be slashed for over 6.2 million people in the nation, including 178,000 children fed in schools.
“Children cannot come to school without such meal,” Anita Anna Samson, a 16-year-old girl, told the journalists.
She attends Mayo Girls Primary School in Juba’s capital, which is one of the WFP’s food program’s recipients.
“I’m pleading with the World Food Programme to keep delivering food.” Personally, I will be impacted since my family cannot afford to feed me enough. “I will not come to school if there is no food,” she stated.
Ijora Jovian, a 17-year-old student, emphasized the value of the program.
“The school feeds us with beans and sorghum, which helps us learn since children who don’t have money for breakfast rely on this food and stay in school during recess.”
Thomas Hakim Sebit, the school’s deputy head teacher, felt that the WFP statement was “sad news” because it would affect many of the school’s more than 700 students.
“If the children’s food is taken away, they will stop coming to school.” “I’m pleading with the World Food Programme and the international community to keep funding the school-feeding program,” he added.
Only 350 girls showed up for enrolling for the new term, which began on Wednesday, as a result of the news.