(thetidenews)- - Nigeria ranks amongst the world’s top ten countries with the largest number of underweight children with an estimated six million under-five who are underweight if the new statistics released by the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) is anything to go by.
To combat malnutrition, the federal government has adopted seven new strategies. The National Planning Commission through the National Committee on Food and Nutrition (NCFN) in collaboration with UNICEF has identified improving food security through programmes and projects in both agricultural and non-agricultural sectors to increase household income, especially in the poorer cadre of the population.
NCFN, the main basis for the co-ordination and harmonisation of all food and nutrition related policies and programme in the country is to foster care-givers capacity base by promoting optimal infant feeding practices and reducing the herculean task on women to create more time for childcare, through the development of labour saving technologies. The committee aims to improve health services to provide essential maternal and child health care.
Other strategies in this wise are: micronutrient deficiency and anemia via a strategy including vitamin and mineral supplementation, food fortification and dietary diversification; combating iodine deficiency disorder through salt iodisation programme; plus institutionalising general consumer protection measures to ensure that food quality and consumer health are adequately safeguarded, as contained in the UNICEF Nigeria latest information sheet on nutrition made available to the media by the communication officer, Christine Jaulmes.
UNICEF representative in Nigeria, Mr Ayalew Abai, at a recent workshop, said this of Nigeria: Happily several African countries are on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) target for underweight – Benin, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, the Gambia and Mauritania. Nigeria is not in this group yet and this has important implications for the sub-region. Nigeria is by far the most populous country in the region and its proportion of underweight children dominates the regional statistics.
The UNICEF representative in Nigeria, urges the federal government to inject the same effort she has inserted in achieving and sustaining universal salt iodation in other nutrition interventions, notably, exclusive breast feeding and vitamin A supplementation.
The report highlights that women who are undernourished have lower resistance to infection and are more liable to die from common childhood ailment like malaria, diarrhea diseases or respiratory infections. It is also estimated that malnutrition contributes to over 50% to mortality amid children aged five years and below.
Jaulmes who backs the national nutrition response on sustainable elimination of vitamin A disorder as well as reduction of iron deficiency anemia and zinc deficiency, also approves of the improvement of early child care practices at households level and in early child care centres.
The Saudi aggression’s warplanes and warships continued to breach the ceasefire on Saturday in the provinces of Hodeidah, Taiz and Mareb, a military official said.
The official explained that the battleships of the Saudi aggression opened fire on the coastal city of Mocha in Taiz, while the surveillance planes continued flying in the sky of Thubab district and the western coast of Taiz.
The National delegation met on Thursday in Kuwait with eighteen ambassadors to Yemen.
During the meeting, the delegation members reviewed with the ambassadors the economic conditions in the country because of the aggression and the restrictions imposed on the Yemeni people, particularly obstructing ships movements, trade, transactions of the Central Bank of Yemen.
They stressed the need for a actual ceasefire and all military operations, affirming that Yemen needs an urgent political solution, taking into consideration the economic and security situations.
The national delegation stressed that after the 18 month-long aggression against Yemen, the other party cannot be recognized as legitimate regarding arms handover and the rest of procedural steps.
It is not difficult to form a consensual transitional government and it is possible to be agreed upon in principle, they said.
The UN Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen, Jamie McGoldrick, has concluded his evaluative visit to the province of Sa’ada.
The UN official urged all warring parties to maintain their commitment to the cessation of hostilities and allowing unconditional access to humanitarian organizations.
McGoldrick also requested from the international community to increase the level of support provided to Yemen.
"It is not possible to stop the suffering in Yemen only through finding a political solution", he said, hoping to continue the cessation of hostilities to allow expanding the humanitarian activities and paving the way for peace.
McGoldrick met, during his visit, with Sa'ada Governor, the Executive Council of the province and local authorities in Al-Qutaber to discuss the need for increasing support in the areas of quartering, health and education.
He urged to maintain the health and educational facilities protected as neutral facilities during armed conflicts.
Emir of Kuwait Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah received on Tuesday the national delegation headed by Mohamed Abdul-Salam and Aref al-Zoka.
In the meeting, al-Sabah confirmed his country's keenness on bringing peace in Yemen and reaching a peaceful solution, hoping that the peace talks in Kuwait will reach a comprehensive solution for the country.
The Emir of Kuwait stressed his keenness on stopping hostilities in Yemen, pointing that the efforts made by Kuwait aimed to succeed the talks.
For his part, Mohammed Abdulsalam affirmed the importance of the Kuwaiti role in bringing peace in Yemen, conforming the position of the national forces to find a just solution in Yemen.
The UN envoy to Yemen confirmed on Monday that the consensus of the participants in Yemeni peace talks held in Kuwait on bringing peace makes reaching a solution possible.
"There is no doubt that there are significant differences in views, but the consensus of the participants to bring peace makes it possible to reach a solution,” the UN envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed said in a statement issued after the talks session Monday.
“There are only two options; either to continue the war or to consult and make concessions in order to achieve peace and all parties should assume responsibility for their decisions,” the UN envoy added.
The Saudi-led coalition has continued to fly intensively on the skies of many provinces, including Sana'a, Taiz, Mareb, Sa'ada, Mahweet, Lahj, Hajjah, Shabwa, Hodeida, Jawf.
A military official said the Riyadh's hirelings targeted the army and popular committees' sites in areas of Beer Basha, al-Khalel in Khadir district, in Jahmaliyah, Klabah, al-Salal and 40 Street in al-Dhamgah district in Taiz with light and medium weapons.
Moreover, the Riyadh's hirelings pounded the army and popular committees sites in al-Shabakah area, al-Ghawi Mount and al-Ain Mount, al-Jurf Mount, al-Shuqairah valley, Hasanat area with mortars in al-Waze'yah district of Taiz, according to the official.
The army and popular committees sites were also targeted by the mercenaries in Nehm district of Sana'a province.
In Mareb province, the hirelings bombarded the army and popular committees sites in al-Mashjah, Hilan Mount, al-Rabiah in Serwah district with medium and heavy weapons.
The Saudi fighter jets dropped flare bombs on different areas of Razeh district in Sa'ada, he said.
The hirelings pounded also areas in al-Ghail and al-Moton districts and targeted sites of the army and popular committees Aibar valley in Jawf with light weapons.