Cabinet Approves 1.9bln Birr Fund to Support Free Meal for Students in Addis Ababa

  • Endorses additional funds to Subsidies Sheger Bread

ADDIS ABABA – The cabinet of the Addis Ababa City Administration has endorsed multi billion birr funds in support of the school feeding program, subsidise sheger bread factory and health insurance for low income residents.

Members of the newly formed cabinet of Addis Ababa city administration held their first regular session of the year on Saturday afternoon.

During the session, the city’s press secretary office said they endorsed multi-billion funds in response to several social and economic pressures the city residents are experiencing.

Accordingly, the cabinet approved a total of 1.9 billion birr support to the city administration’s school feeding program.

The city administration launched the program two years ago to provide free meals to over 300, 000 students at state-run junior schools.

The initiative – which has become key in stopping students from dropping out of education and encourage parents to send their children to school, is also responsible for providing free uniforms and exercise books for the students.

The newly endorsed fund will allow the ahency that runs the program continue providing support to students in the recently started Ethiopian academic year, the press secretary office said in a statement.

Subsidizes Sheger Bread

During the regular meeting, the cabinet also approved additional funds to subsidize Sheger Bread Factory and its customers.

The factory, a private public partnership project involving MIDROC Ethiopia Group’s subsidiary Horizon Plantations, started operation in June last year to alleviate shortage of bread in the fast-growing city and stabilize its price.

The press Secretary office said, after taking the current market into context, the cabinet decided to allocate nearly 310 million birr to subsidize customers of breads produced by  the bakery.

The cabinet also approved about 190.8 million birr additional fund to subsidize the Horizon Plantation’s factory, which has a production capacity of 80,000 loaves of bread an hour.

Health insurance & More

Similarly, members of the Cabinet have decided to determine the amount of public contributions to the city’s Community-based insurance that pools members’ premium payments into a collective fund.

They also authorized a 144 million birr fund to help at least 231,000 low-income residents get health insurance, according to the City’s Press Secretary office.

Additionally, the administration sanctioned 70 million birr one-time assistance to the Addis Ababa City Football Club.

In the long run, however, the cabinet put direction for the club to look for sustainable sources of revenue and become financially independent, the press Secretary office said.

Members of the cabinet started their Saturday’s session with a discussion and passing resolutions to address problems linked to road construction, green development, building height and other related issues.

They concluded the regular session with a decision to set up an interim committee to assist vulnerable groups in various parts of Ethiopia.

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