By: Kate Obi/Kaduna
The Family Health Advocacy in Nigeria Initiative (FHANI) has appealed to the Kaduna State Commissioner of Health, Dr. Paul Dogo as a matter of urgency facilitate for the timely release and cash backing of the approved 2017 child spacing budget line as time is running out.
FHANI made the call during an advocacy visit to the Commissioner of Health, Dr. Paul Dogo in his office for a speedy release and cash backing of the 100 million naira child spacing budget line in Kaduna Monday.
The Initiative opined that the advocacy became necessary to reduce the high mortality rate which Nigeria ranks first in the world, beating Indian while Kaduna State is raking worst in material health indexes in Nigeria.
FHANI continued to inform that effective child-spacing can reduce maternal death by 40 percent and under five mortality rates by 25 percent if the fund is released.
Speaking on behalf of FHANI, the Assistant Secretary, Mr. Iliya Kure observed that the role played in leading the campaign for securing the budget line for child spacing by the Commissioner of Health, Mr. Paul Dogo cannot over emphasis.
“The ministry of health has played a very vital role in ensuring the creation of child spacing budget line towards procurement of commodities. So we came to say thank you to the role you played and promoting”.
“We are also here to find out if any release has been made from the budget line of child spacing of 100 million naira because we are doing follow up for the implementation as we are in the 2nd quarter of the year.
“We understand that this is a very key thing as some of the women, what they need is simple rest, if their womb can rest, you are doing a lot of work in saving them, but even after CS, you see within 4 months or 3 months there will be another pregnancy which is very risky so what we are promoting is for men to look through the risk of frequent pregnancy of their wives for women to regain their strength after delivery and for their children to grow to some reasonable level before another pregnancy, so that is what we are advocating for” he added.
Mr. Kure however expressed worry that the state government and the State Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning have not yet release any part of the budgeted amount for child-spacing despite the fact that the buildup of 2018 budget has commenced in the state.
Responding, the Commissioner, Dr. Paul Dogo assured that the Ministry is working tirelessly to see that as much as possible, they access the entire money that is budgeted for child spacing.
“If you look at the demand and the amount budgeted for child spacing, which is commendable, you can agree with me that it is inadequate. So we should be able to access all so that we can demand for more in the next year’s budget line for child spacing.
“The Ministry will do what they can to scale the budget line which will be better justified if we have exhausted the approved budget line so that we can be able to scale up the next budget line for child spacing. It took us this long to be able to put up a request, our target is to see that no woman will be asked to pay for anything at the health facilities before she could be attended to or access health services.
“The 1st thing is for us to push for the release of the budget line fund and once there is a release then we push for the cash backing.