By Tobias Lengnan Dapam
Nutrition experts at the weekend revealed that over $100 million is need to stamp out the rampant cases of malnutrition in northeastern states of Yobe, Borno and Adamawa states.
The experts made the revelation in Yola, Adamawa state, during a media dialogue with journalists/interface with OAPs on child malnutrition in northeast.
The dialogue was organized by the Child Rights Information Bureau (CRIB) of the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture in partnership with the United Nations Children Funds (UNICEF).
Specifically, Nutrition Consultant, Davis Bamidele, said children malnutrition in Nigeria is prevalence in the northern region, with over 25 million under 5 children suffering from malnutrition while over 10 million affected by stunted growth.
He said “The situation and indices of malnutrition in the North Eastern part of Nigeria remains precarious, the under five mortality rate in these areas exceeds the threshold of 10,000 deaths recorded among children under the age of five daily”.
He further identified insurgency, poverty, lack of education, gender issues amongst others as the drivers of malnutrition in the region.
“Insurgency in the region maybe seen as the major driver of malnutrition as it has over the years led to high good insecurity, negative coping strategies, increased spread if endemic diseases and destruction of access to quality water and optimal sanitation”, he added.
Bamidele said that lack of care and show of love is also an important factor to consider in the fight against malnutrition, saying that most infant deaths results from lack of care from parents.
On his part, the Deputy Director, CRIB in the ministry of information, Olumide Osanyinpeju, stressed that combating malnutrition is imperative to the control of infant mortality in Nigeria, adding that concerned effort is required to ensure total eradication of malnutrition in Nigeria.
According to him, “Malnutrition is a large burden to a country, and tackling malnutrition entails empowering and educating the people. Also, improved nutrition is the key to improved National and human development”.
“Addressing nutrition is one of the ways sustainable development goals can be achieved, therefore investment in nutrition will help reduce the trend of malnutrition which had been ensured by the creation of this dialogue”.