By: Joy Odor/Kaduna
A Non-Governmental Organization, Kaduna Mortality Accountability Mechanism (KADMAM) has called for appropriate funding by Federal Government, States, Local Governments and other stakeholders to reduce the rate of maternal mortality in the country.
This was made known in an interview to newsmen in Zaria, Kaduna on Sunday by the Co-Chairman of KADMAM, Alhaji Mustapha Jumare on the sidelines of a three day review meeting, also advocated for holistic synergy among stakeholders to tackle the growing maternal mortality in the State.
He said such collaborations would help in identifying the challenges and evolve strategies to address the menace of maternal mortality not only in Kaduna State but in Nigeria as a whole.
Alhaji Jumare, who is also a former Director of Nursing Services, attributed some of the major challenges of the continued rise of maternal deaths and child mortality to low budgetary allocation to the health sector.
Co-Chairman noted with concern, the non-release of even the amount allocated to the sector in most of the States in the 2017.
“We are here to review the activities of Kaduna Maternal Accountability Mechanism which was inaugurated in July 2015 in Kaduna.
“It comprises 38 members from Ministries, Departments such as NDLEA, Primary Health Care Development Agency, Budget and Planning, Civil Society Organizations and the Media as well as other Civil Society Organizations.
“All these are working together to drastically reduce the maternal mortality in Kaduna State,” he said.
“We are working on maternal new born and child health and the focus are to try as much possible to create programmes that are likely going to reduce maternal and new born death in Kaduna.
“We work on data we received from Ministry of Health, State Bureau for Statistic, Budget and Planning among others and put our heads together for the collective good of all” he lamented.
Alhaji Jumare however mentioned that, the meeting would look at what it had done so far, what the challenges were and how to address them, adding that it would also look at what they would be doing in the next one year.
According to him, the Federal Government, allocated N71 billion to the health sector in the 2018 budget proposal present to the National Assembly by President Muhammad Buhari.
The Co-Chairman opined that the amount allocated fell short of minimum international standard of 15 per cent of a total national or state budget, saying available data obtained from the Nigeria Demographic Health Survey 2013, also showed that 576 women die in every 100,000 live births in the country.
“This is good, but it is not the allocation that matters but what is the release and what is the money that is provided for in the budget for doing the activity, that is our concern.
“This is what is affecting the health sector but we are working towards addressing that,” he said.
He commended the Kaduna State Government for steady increase in its budget allocation to health sector for the 2018 appropriation.
KADMAM is a coalition of Non-Governmental Organizations, Government, Media and other critical stakeholders working to curb death of mothers during child bearing in the state.
The review programme is being supported by Maternal Newborn and Child Health (MNCH 2).