Nigeria Has 11m Stunted Children, Second In The World – Minister | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Nigeria Has 11m Stunted Children, Second In The World – Minister

terrorism, stunted children; IDPs
Posted: Sep 7, 2016 at 9:10 am   /   by   /   comments (0)


Chibuzor Emejor



Zainab Ahmed, the Minister of State, Budget and National Planning, has said that Nigeria has the highest burden of malnutrition with over 11 million stunted children which is the highest in Africa and second in the world.

Ahmed expressed the irrevocable commitment of the Federal Government in collaborating with the Nutrition Society and Partners to curb malnutrition and food insecurity in Nigeria.

The minister who spoke in Abuja as part of activities lined up for the celebration of Nutrition Week in Nigeria, said the Federal Government had approved the National Policy on Food and Nutrition (NPFN) which was formulated by the National Committee on Food and Nutrition to deal with the multi-faceted problem of food and nutrition using a multi-sectoral disciplinary programme approach.

She also explained that the NPFN, is a 10-year blueprint for eradicating malnutrition for sustainable economic growth and development in Nigeria

“The vision of the policy is to have a country where the people are equitably secure in food and nutrition with high quality of life and socio-economic development, contributing to human capital development objectives of Nigeria’s Vision 20:2020.

“The goal is to attain optimal nutritional status for all Nigerians with particular emphasis on the most vulnerable groups such as children, adolescents, women, elderly and groups with special nutritional need,” she stated.

Ahmed also disclosed that the revised national policy on food and nutrition to be launched by the Mrs. A’isha Buhari, Wife of the President, would reduce the proportion of people who suffer from hunger and nutrition by 50 percent by 2025, increase exclusive breastfeeding rate from 17 percent in 2013 to 65 percent by 2025.

“It is also to increase the percentage of children age six and above who receive appropriate complementary feeding from 10 percent in 2013 to 40 percent by 2025,” she stated.

In his remarks, Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information and Culture, said that the issue of malnutrition is a big problem in Nigeria which goes beyond just agriculture, arguing that good life-style has to be taken seriously.

He called for increased breastfeeding for mothers to children and improved hygiene.

He also said that the fight against malnutrition in Nigeria should not be left for the Federal Government alone but that all stakeholders, including the private sector, must be involved.