By Orunbon Ademola, Ogun
The Family Health Initiative Ogun (FHIO), a Non-Governmental advocacy working group has requested wives of State Governors in Nigeria to ensure that Family Planning/child Spacing programmes take the front burner in a quest to promote maternal and child health with increase in contraceptive uptake.
The Chairperson of the Group, Mrs. Kemi Balogun, made the call during an advocacy visit to the Wife of Ogun State Governor, Mrs. Bamidele Abiodun, in Iperu, Remo North Local Government Area of the State.
Balogun said involvement and sincere interest on the plight of women, children and adolescent would enhance effective family planning, child spacing services in the State, stating that efforts of Mrs. Abiodun to facilitate the provision of consumables in public health facilities would increase the uptake of contraceptives in furtherance to meet up with the targeted Contraceptive prevalence Rate (CPR) of 52 percent by year 2020 in its contribution to the National Blueprint on CPR.
“The commitment of wives of Governors in various States to the promotion of family planning/child spacing programmes with availability of consumables in public health facilities will improve maternal and child health and invariably help in the realization of targeted, 52 percent CPR by year 2020” she emphasized.
Contributing, Secretary of FHIO, Revd. Olajide Odugbemi, said the Group was passionate about family wellbeing particularly issues that affect women, children, adolescent and youths, noting that the support of policy makers, agencies and relevant stakeholders was encouraging.
Odugbemi who highlighted the achievements recorded by the Group since its establishment in 2014 to include, Creating of Budget line for Family Planning, facilitating the domestication of Task Shifting and Sharing Policy, Costed Implementation Plan, training of FP Youth Ambassador among others.
In her presentation, the Demand Creation Technical Assistant, The Challenge Initiative (TCI), an urban reproductive health project in the State, Dr. Bunmi Oyelade, pointed out that the State had greater opportunities to tap in the provision of qualitative healthcare for the people, stating that Family Planning/Child Spacing services was highly impactful and cost effective means to reduce maternal mortality and morbidity rates.
Oyelade expanciated that the State should address the unmet needs on Family Planning while adolescent and youth reproductive health should be a core concern, adding that interventions in this regard should be data driven with institutionalization of feedback mechanism.
In her response, Mrs. Abodun said the remarkable efforts and contributions of NGOs in various aspect of the economy cannot be over emphasized, saying provision of efficient healthcare and improvement in the health indices of the State remain a collective responsibility.
She appreciated the selfless strides of the Group, as well as detailed information and education on the state of maternal, child and adolescent health in the State, assured to do her best, reach out to organizations and well-meaning individuals in order for the State to achieve more on healthcare delivery.
According to her, the contributions of NGOs particularly your group to the wellbeing of people and socio-economic development has been a remarkable one and I will establish a direct relationship in promoting family planning activities, ante-natal and post-natal care and adolescent reproductive health.