The Deputy Director of Child Rights Information Bureau, Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, Olumide Osanyinpeju, has said that increased investments in child nutrition will raise human and capital developments.
Improved nutrition, according to him, entails empowerment and education of people on “dangers and implications” of malnutrition among 23 million children in Nigeria.
He explained this on Wednesday in Yola, while addressing journalists at the UNICEF’s two-day workshop on Media Dialogue on Child Malnutrition (MDCM).
He said that malnutrition is an enormous burden to the country and should be tackled by “empowering and educating” the people at national and community levels.
“Improved nutrition is the key to raise both human and economic development,” he said, adding that this can be achieved by educating the populace to create a positive approach towards nutrition.
Continuing, he said: “Overcoming the challenges of malnutrition, is one of the ways through which the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) could be achieved.
He further argued that investment in nutrition will help reduce negative trends of malnutrition, which include poverty, illiteracy, child and maternal mortalities.
He said strategic objectives of improving food security at national and community levels should also be defined by the Workshop.
This, according to him, was to reduce malnutrition among children, adolescents and women of reproductive age.
On nutrition investments, Osanyinpeju said: “You are encouraged to raise awareness and understanding of the problem of malnutrition in Nigeria and the resource allocation for food security at levels,” adding that awareness be created among mothers to adopt exclusive breastfeeding for six months.
According to him, the breast milk is enough for the infant, as nutrition is the key to national economic development.
He said it is for every citizen to have food that is nutrition secured and know that his/her rights to food, are assured by the policy makers.
He claimed that working with government will tackle the challenges of stunting, wasting and obesity among children.