By John Okeke
Against the backdrop of increased in pandemic in the country, the First Lady, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Mrs. Aisha Muhammadu Buhari has called on Government stakeholders at federal and state levels to commit funds to the prevention and treatment of all forms of malnutrition, ensuring that all policies and services required for treatment of malnutrition including the CMAM centres are supported to function optimally particular in this time.
The First Lady through her Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity , Aliyu Abdullahi, said Humaniterian support programmes; Private sector Interventions and donations by well-meaning Nigerians should focus on ensuring that food palliatives factor in the necessary dietary diversification by adding food commodities like millet, groundnut, beans, soya etc.
According to her, Malnutrition is one of the major cause of mortality and underdevelopment among children under five in Nigeria before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic , adding ” with the emergence of the pandemic and subsequent restriction of movement, the situation has worsened, resulting in the shortage of food supply. Consequently, this has led to a significant increase in the number of acutely malnourished children requiring urgent attention and collective action. ”
“Mrs. Buhari strongly believes that making provisions for this category of children is a step towards upholding their rights to good nutrition and their right to life,” it said.
She said Community stakeholders, families and caregivers should ensure that food items meant for malnourished children are actually given to the children who need them for their health and well-being.
“Finally, the First Lady believes that in taking these actions, we as a county will be protecting children from the scourge of SAM and in the long term, taking steps towards attaining wholistic health of the Nigerian population and in line with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) to leave no one behind,” she added.