By Chioma Umeha
The Kaduna State Government has pledged to partner with the Civil Society Scaling-Up Nutrition in Nigeria (CS-SUNN) to tackle malnutrition in the state.
This commitment was made by Chairperson of the Kaduna State Emergency Nutrition Action Plan (KADENAP) Hajiya Aisha Ummi Garba El-Rufai during a recent advocacy visit by CS-SUNN in Kaduna.
“I am more than excited to work with CS-SUNN. Once we can sit and map out how to address malnutrition in Kaduna, funding will be made available for activities. CS-SUNN has advanced in so many issues regarding nutrition; drawing attention to challenges and disturbing data and figures, I will work with them”, the KADENAP Chairperson said.
Hajiya Ummi El-Rufai therefore directed that CS-SUNN be invited to join the KADENAP Steering Committee as project partner especially in the area of data provision and distribution, community enlightenment and orientation.
Earlier, Project Director of CS-SUNN, Mrs. Beatrice Eluaka said nutrition is a development issue that requires multi-sectoral action.
“People have food but do not know how to utilize them which sometimes results in nutritional problems.”
She noted that CS-SUNN seeks to contribute to achieving a “country where every citizen has food and is nutrition secured” and pursues this lofty goal by engaging and mobilizing government, and non-state actors to advocate for relevant Policy implementation, and stimulate communities to scale-up nutrition in Nigeria, with especial focus on maternal and child nutrition.
“We want to work with government to see how we can address the issue of malnutrition. We look forward to having a KADNAP, where malnutrition is no longer an emergency,” Eluaka said.
While presenting the advocacy report to the governor’s wife, Kaduna State Coordinator of CS-SUNN, Mr. Silas Spencer Ideva, said the coalition is designed with a common goal, clearly defined roles and responsibilities, clear accountability and sustainability framework.
Mr. Ideva also said that the CS-SUNN seeks timely release of funding to enable implementation of activities within line ministries to combat malnutrition in the state, insisting that funding is a major challenge.