Malnutrition caused half child mortality rate in Nigeria – UNICEF

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By Dahiru Suleiman, Dutse

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Recent survey by UNICEF has uncovered that about half of child mortality rate in Nigeria was attributable to malnutrition. Thus, good nutrition plays a leading role in averting death of children.
This assertion was dropped by the Chief Field Officer of UNICEF in charge of Bauchi Head Office in a paper he presented during the flagging off of Food Nutrition and Social Protection Policy on children below the age of five by the Jigawa State Government at Ahmadu Bello Hall in Dutse.
He stated that ensuring proper nutrition of children requires a life cycle approach whereby adequate nutrition commences from conception to newborn until the baby grows into an adolescent stage.
He contended that negligence and lack of care for the girl child during childhood and adolescence complicates the health and nutritional status of the individual, which was why UNICEF identified nutrition as one of the priority interventions in the country and thus the support for developing institutional framework to address the issues of nutrition.
Also speaking, the Country Director of Action Against Hunger, Mr. Shashwat Saraf, stated that the official launching of Jigawa Social Protection Policy and Food and Nutrition was to provide much needed impetus for reducing poverty, promoting economic growth as well as addressing the menace of malnutrition from a multi sectoral perspective.
He re-affirmed his Agency’s commitment towards continuous support for Jigawa State Government to the successful implementation of these two vital components on the growth and development of children in the state.

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