Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health (MNCH) Week has been described as an important factor in the effort to reduce maternal and child mortality in Nigeria. This point was made by wife of the President, Aisha Muhammadu Buhari during the flag-off of the November round of MNCH Week at Alelu village, Kebbi state.
Mrs. Buhari was represented by Mrs. Hansatu Zannah, wife of the former Deputy Governor of Borno state, said “simple interventions such as increasing awareness on the importance of health and health care services, routine immunization, de-worming of children and Vitamin A supplementation can significantly contribute to reduction of maternal and child mortality.”
She called for the strengthening of systems and supporting women to adopt healthy practices and seek appropriate care for maternal and child health. “My Future Assured Programme seeks to achieve the improvement of the health and wellbeing of women and children through advocacy and delivery of essential health care services, and it is for this reason that I implemented interventions in the areas of Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child Adolescent Health and Nutrition (RMNCAH+N) nationwide.”
She congratulated Kebbi state for aligning with national priorities in ensuring that the May and November rounds of MNCH Week holds as scheduled and called on other states that are yet to key in to do so for the benefit of their women and children.
Mrs. Buhari called for more partnerships, especially from the private sector, in the area of supporting state governments’ work towards improving their various health situations.
Governor of Kebbi state, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu said his government is critically aware of the objective of the MNCH weeks, which is to reduce morbidity and mortality in mothers and children less than 5 years of age and that Kebbi state provides funding for the MNCH weeks. He called on women to take advantage of the week and the free services provided.
Wife of the Governor of Kebbi state, Dr. Zainab Shinkafi Bagudu, appreciated the support she is getting from the state government in promoting the health of women and children and said MNCH is one out of the many interventions receiving serious attention from the state government.
Dr. Bagudu said breastfeeding rooms have been provided in government workplaces and a mothers’ room for mothers whose babies are on admission. She said the 2000 Nutrition Community Volunteers that have been neglected will receive a new lease of life for the contributions they are making towards health promotion in the state, saying the governor had approved N10, 000 monthly allowance for each of them. She also appointed herself the Grand Patron of the group to ensure that they receive all the support they need from government.