Nutrition: Mrs Akeredolu advocates massive food production, girl’s education for healthy population

..joins colleagues for National Women In Power Conference on Nutrition

The wife of the Governor of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, has identified adequate food production as a major factor to combat child malnutrition in Nigeria.

The Ondo State First Lady said this while speaking as a participant at the National Women in Power Conference, organised by the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs in collaboration with the Nigeria Governors Wives’ Forum and other nutritional agencies, held at the Transcorp Hilton hotel, Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, on Wednesday.

According to her, the campaign for adequate nutrition would yield undesired results if there is no adequate and enough food to consume, hence the need to invest massively in agriculture.

Responding to the question on the impact of girl’s nutrition on the national development in Nigeria, Mrs. Akeredolu affirmed that if girls were educated and enlightened about adequate nutrition, it would bring about a healthy population.

She explained that since a girl grows to become a woman, wife, and mother, she’d ensured that her family eats good diets and consequently, prevents malnutrition.

“When these girls are aware of what is healthy nutrition they will carry it along into adulthood, and when they are married they will ensure that their families eat well; when she gets pregnant she knows she has to feed with healthy diets to support herself and the baby growing within her”, she asserted.

Mrs Akeredolu with Dr. Aminu Tambuwal, Chairman Governors Wives’ Forum

She cited her Bemore Empowered Girls summer bootcamp through which healthy diet is promoted among girls of secondary school during two weeks summer bootcamp in Ondo State.

L-R: Mrs Aminu Tambuwal and the CEO of the Governors Wives’ Forum, Hauwa Haliru, with Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu

“If you are not aware, we have Summer programme called Bemore Empowered Girls Summer Bootcamp, where we camp teenagers from JSS1-SS3 for two weeks. One of the highlights is making sure that our girls are fed with quality diets, my Matrons ensure they eat the fruits and the vegetables”.

She described the conference as a call to build on the already laid foundation, saying: “and now that it’s like a national project, we will now intensify efforts, already the foundation has been laid, so, it’s not just the girls alone, it will be extended to the women and the entire population of Ondo State “.

Earlier in her opening speech, the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors Wives’ Forum, Dr. Mariya Aminu Tambuwal, had averred that healthy nutrition must continue to be a major public health problem in Nigeria.

She identified inadequate water and Sanitation as one of the factors contributing to malnutrition in Nigeria.

Mrs. Aminu Tambuwal charged mothers to ensure that children get appropriate nourishment and, Wives of Governors must strive to influence nutrition matter in their States.

The conference, themed: “Women in Power: Harnessing our Position in improving Nutrition Outcomes “, featured presentations on ‘Nutrition Situation in Nigeria with Focus on Women and Girls: How it contributes to National Development’, ‘Funding Nutrition in Nigeria’, and a panel discussion on ‘Multisectoral Responsibilities in Addressing Women and Girls’ Nutrition’.

The conference came up with a 5-point commitment plan, adopted by the Governors Wives’ Forum, which include creating awareness on exclusive breastfeeding, advocacy for six months paid maternity leave, cultivation of schools gardens, advocacy on establishment of creche at offices, and budgeting and timely release of funds on nutrition.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant on Media to Ondo State Governor (Office of the First Lady)
May 17, 2023

Published by WonderLady

Journalist, Educationist, Writer, Human Rights Advocate

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