Food Day: Minister, NGOs advocate nutrition as part of COVID-19 prevention strategies



The Ministry of Women Affairs and Action Against Hunger, an NGO have advocated that nutrition should be a major part of the COVID-19 prevention strategies to fortify nutritional value of individuals and communities in Nigeria .

The minister Pauline Tallen made the call on the occasion of World Food Day organised by Action Against Hunger Nigeria in Abuja on Friday.

According to her, the call has become imperative due to the numerous challenges being presently faced by the country.

Tallen, represented by Ms Jumia Mohammed, the Director, Child and Focal Officer, Online Sexual Exploitation, said that the effect of COVID-19 crippled livelihoods and resulted in the increase in all forms of violence and women were the most hit.

She said that available report showed that Nigeria had the highest number of children affected by malnutrition globally, with more than 2.5 million suffering from acute malnutrition.

“Of the national prevalence rate, 32 per cent of children under five,only two out of every 10 children  affected is currently reached with treatment, report also showed that Nigeria has the highest burden of stunted children in the world.

“The ministry has been working to educate the society on the benefits of consuming local nutritious foods among others .

“It is important to note that healthy nutritious diets are key to boosting imunity and preventing non-communicable diseases  that are risk factors for higher morbidity and mortality .’’

Tallen added that food and nutrition security should  be safeguarded ,as nutrition could not wait.

She said this called for continuous nutrition intervention as short-term disruptions of such programmes could have irreversible effects on child survival, health and development of women and children in the long run.

Ms Beatrice Eluaka, the Executive Secretary, Civil Society Scaling Up Nutrition in Nigeria (CS-SUNN) urged government at all levels to ensure  delivery of affordable and sustainable healthy diets for all.

Eluaka said that that there was the need to prioritise the food and nutrition needs of the poorest and most vulnerable households in Nigeria by expanding and improving emergency food assistance and social protection programmes.pp

She called for the approval and implementation of  the National Multisectoral Plan of Action for Nutrition to guarantee optimal nutritional status for Nigerians through accelerating the scaling up of priority high impact nutrition specific and nutrition sensitive interventions.

Eluaka called for improvement in the  budgetary allocations of nutritions, releasing and cash backing those allocations while ensuring transparency and accountability in use of funds directed at addressing malnutrition.

She called for extension of the current four months maternity leave for nursing mothers to 6 months to enable them exclusively to breastfeed their babies among others.

She encouraged  Nigerians to increase their overall demand for nutritious food by choosing healthy, and not allowing sustainable habits fall by the wayside.

Sen. Abubakar Kyari, the Senator representing  Borno, said that  Nigeria still had a lot to do in the area of fighting hunger in Nigeria, especially in the North East, and in Borno.

“Nigerians, Action Against Hunger in collaboration with the Federal and state ministries, agencies and departments and legislators among other stakehlders were developing programmes.”

Adama Diarrassouba, the Deputy Country Director, Support Action  Against Hunger said that the  programmes were aimed at fighting hunger through the improvement of food security, children, pregnant and lactating women nutritional

According to the United Nations’ global state of food security and nutrition report, almost 690 million people across the world suffered of hunger in 2019, an increase of 10 million people from 2018.

“Yet, the situation is expected to  be worst in 2020 due to the  COVID-19 pandemic, unfortunately, majority of these victims are women and children; the most vulnerable part of the population.’’

Diarrassouba said that it was in that context that it was collaborating with stakeholders like CSOs, Development partners ,and MDAs to tackle the challenge .

Edited By: Ese E. Ekama
Source: NAN


#EndSARS: Plateau judicial panel on police calls for submission of complaints Huawei third-quarter revenue rises 3.7%, ending double-digit growth streak United States stock futures dip, Yen gains after final Trump-Biden debate Trump and Biden clash sharply over pandemic in less chaotic final debate Protests: PDP directs half-flown party’s flag nationwide NCDC confirms 138 new COVID-19 infections, 2 deaths #EndSARS: Obaseki promises 60 per cent of youths representation in new cabinet #EndSARS: Enugu lawmaker urges protesters to embrace dialogue Burnley’s Dyche vows to set up awkward test for Spurs Milan withstand late pressure to beat Celtic 3-1 in Europa League Iheanacho shines as Leicester City beat Zorya Luhansk 3-0 in Europa League opener Bale starts for Spurs in comfortable 3-0 win over LASK Anambra to train tricycle operators, says Transport Commissioner Protests: Together we must protect, rebuild Lagos, ex-lawmaker tells youths LG election : Ban on campaigns still in force – NASIEC Edo Govt. reviews 24-hour curfew, now  4p.m. to 6a.m. Protest: 17 South-West senators condemn destruction of property Protests: INEC postpones bye-elections indefinitely Police confirm attack on station in Ebonyi community Police set to enforce compliance with 24-hour curfew in Imo #EndSARS: Probe Lekki shootings, women coalition urges Buhari Alkmaar stun Napoli in spite of missing 13 players due to COVID-19 Arsenal hit back to beat Rapid Vienna and spare Leno’s blushes #ENDSARS: Diasporas urge FG to employ strategic measures   Kano Pillars unveil 9 new players, Technical Adviser for new season NGO trains, empowers 20 female journalists on fish farming #ENDSARS: Institute invites protesters for dialogue EPL: Manchester United in buoyant mood ahead of clash with Chelsea #EndSARS: Gov. Obiano tasks stakeholders on peace Lagos CP condemns burning of Ikotun, Ojodu police stations Emir urges youth to shun planned EndSARS protest in Keffi #EndSARS: Ascertain all facts, Buhari tells international community I’m available for consultancy job – Bewarang #EndSARS: Group wants Nigeria’s security apparatus restructured Lekki Shooting: LASEMA debunks refusal to rescue protesters EndSARS: Gov. Oyetola inaugurates 12-man Judicial Panel of inquiry on police brutality EndSARS: Don’t be used by subversive elements, Buhari urges protesters Canada contributes US$3m to Nigeria’s UN COVID-19 basket EU-UNICEF spends N2.6bn on MNCH in Bauchi in 4 years Assembly passes mining bill in Kebbi State  Buhari’s Broadcast on ENDSARS Protests #EndSARS: Advocate underscores role of women in crisis management Don’t share offensive posts on EndSARS protests on social media- Koffi Tha Guru NAERLS urges Kaduna govt. to sustain intervention in agriculture Kwara FA endorses Ogunjobi Gold Cup FCT minister to residents: Don’t allow external forces to divide us Oil Spills: Environmentalists berate Shell for defying regulatory compliance  P’Harcourt DisCo cautions customers against paying for repairs of transformers Wife drags husband to court over alleged assault, lack of care Jailbreak: Correctional Service orders personnel to be at alert