The Civil Society Scaling up Nutrition in Nigeria( CS-SUNN) said there is a need to advance Nigeria’s nutrition agenda for improved nutritional status of women, children, and vulnerable groups which will contribute to attaining the country’s Human Capital Development targets.
The Executive Secretary of CS-SUNN Mr Sunday Okoronkwo stated this at a media roundtable on reset nutrition for human capital development in Abuja.
Mr Okoronkwo was represented by Mrs Lilian Okafor the Communication Officer of CS-SUNN.
According to him, the PINNS-2.0 project highlights the need for the government’s commitment towards improving nutrition through strong nutrition governance.
“The project will ensure that data for planning and decision making is routinely available and that adequate domestic financing is made available to effectively deliver on nutrition services. The outcome will be a well-nourished child who grows up to become a major contributor to growing the country’s Gross Domestic Product, thus aligning to the country’s Human Capital Development objectives.”
The Executive Secretary further stated that the burden of malnutrition has remained a great source of concern in the country.
“Nigeria has the highest number of stunted under-five aged children in Sub-Saharan Africa and the second-highest number of stunted children in the world, making malnutrition a significant public health problem in the country. Trends from the National Demographic Health Survey (NDHS) puts the prevalence of stunting at 42% in 2003, 41% in 2008 and 37% in 2013 and 2018.”
The Representative of the Budget and National Planning Ministry, Mrs Chito Nelson urged the media not to relent in playing a critical role in placing nutrition at the front burner in Nigeria.
In the same vein, she added that the RESET project is important to national development, especially in the aspect of the nutritional outcome.
“Government has made a lot of commitment to resolving issues around malnutrition, and the plan is out there for implementation. We will not relent on what we are doing, there is room for improvement”.
Speaking at the event NUJ Chairman, Mr. Emmanuel Ogbeche emphasized the need for stakeholders in the nutrition sector to provide adequate data that will aid Journalists in churning out well-written stories.
“Some government officials are not open and accessible when it comes to providing information on important issues such as nutrition. Adequate information will ensure that journalists are well-positioned to perform their role in the post COVID era”.