The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, says malnutrition is a threat to the survival, growth and development of Nigerian children.
Mohammed, represented by Permanent Secretary Lydia Shehu-Jafiya, stated this at the inauguration of the Special National Food and Nutrition Media Team in Abuja.
According to him, nutrition is critical towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, improved health and development, hence the need to tackle challenges mitigating it.
”We must note that Nigeria is ranked number one in Africa, and number two globally in terms of the number of malnourished children.
”With an estimated 14.7 million children under the age of five years predicted to suffer this year from wasting, a condition from moderate and severe to acute malnutrition.
”Malnutrition threatens the survival, growth and development of millions of our children,” he said.
The minister noted the slow result outcomes and observed gaps on nutrition investment in the country, especially in areas of monitoring, evaluation and accountability to stakeholders.
He said inaugurating the National Media Team on nutrition would help in enhancing and implementing programmes and interventions on nutrition in the country, especially in rural areas.
Abimbola Adesanmi, Senior Special Assistant to President on Nutrition, represented by Emmanuel Ohiomokhare, Communication Expert, National Council on Nutrition Delivery Unit, said the media team would assist government reduce morbidity and mortality associated with malnutrition.
Salem Akindele-Rock, a nutrition and health advocate, said: ”The lacuna created by the seeming shut-out of the media in the area of food and nutrition intervention is manifest in the stark reality confronting us today as it relates to malnutrition, stunting, other nutrition related sicknesses and indeed all ailments in general. (NAN)