The Association of Health Journalists has tasked incoming Nigerian leaders to prioritise access to family planning commodities and services to improve maternal health care/President of the Association, Hassan Zaggi, made the call at a summit to call government’s attention to deteriorating maternal and childcare services in the country.
Zaggi warned that many political elites and aspirants are not aware of the magnitude of deaths related to poor family planning services in the country.
Speaking on the theme, ‘Raising Voices for More Funding for Family Planning and Free Maternal Health Services by Incoming Political Leaders’, Zaggi said “ Some of these leaders who are seeking election may not be conversant with the troubling indices around maternal and child health.
He said, ”It is our responsibility as the media to bring the issues to the fore so that they will understand and prepare their minds to tackle them when they eventually assume office.”
“I call on journalists to ensure that we present these issues as they are so that our incoming leaders will come to terms with the reality that Nigeria’s maternal mortality rate is estimated at 512 deaths per 100,000 live births, far from the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) target of 70 per 100,000 live births,” he added.
At the summit supported by the Partnership for Advocacy In Child and Family Health at Scale ([email protected]), anchored by the Development Research and Projects Centre (dRPC), experts agreed that modern contraception has been known to prevent unintended pregnancies, nearly a million unsafe abortions and 15,000 maternal deaths.