We bring you statements of commitment indicating that CS-SUNN’s advocacy efforts for the establishment of Nutrition Departments in key line Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in Niger state has been welcomed by key stakeholders and that plans are underway to institutionalize this in the state.
“We will engage all the necessary persons for the facilitation of the implementation of the asks. We will develop a letter to the His Excellency, the Governor of Niger state for approval”, said Niger State Head of Service, Madam Salamatu T. Abubakar.
In the words of the Permanent Secretary, Niger state Ministry of Women Affairs, Kaltum Dauda Rufai “The Ministry of Women Affairs will key into the creation of nutrition department as soon as the state approves it because we understand the importance of nutrition to personal and national development”.
According to the Permanent Secretary, Niger state Ministry of Agriculture, Idris Gbogan “Niger state Ministry of Agriculture is doing the best possible within the limited resources to see that the women and children are well nourished and once the creation of nutrition department is institutionalized in the state, the Ministry of Agriculture will not hesitate to key into the creation of nutrition department”.
“Now the creation of this nutrition department will have to go through the amendment of the laws that guide the establishment of the agency, hence the need to engage the legislators. Niger State Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) will however not only wait for but also push to see the directive been passed from the office of the HOS. We will work with Niger Planning Commission to push for the asks” added, Executive Director, Niger State Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr. Ibrahim Dangana.
These commitments were drawn from a five-day advocacy visit and breakfast meeting with key stakeholders in Niger state supported by CS-SUNN. The visit was aimed at advocating for the creation of Nutrition Departments in line MDAs, improved funding for nutrition activities and extension of paid maternity leave from four to six months in Niger state.
The Government of Nigeria under the leadership of Former President Mohammed Buhari had approved the establishment of Nutrition Departments in line MDAs at both the federal and state levels. This Executive order became imperative following the need to address capacity gaps for effective delivery on commitments, policy implementation, investments for nutrition and sound implementation of nutrition programmes in key government sectors. Of the 36 states and the FCT, Zamfara, Plateau and Cross River states have institutionalized this executive order with the process ongoing in some ministries at the Federal Level.
CS-SUNN with support from the PINNS project is collaborating with the office of the Vice President of Nigeria and the National Committee on Food and Nutrition to domesticate the establishment of Nutrition department in the line MDAs in Kaduna, Kano, Nasarawa, Niger, Lagos and some other states in Nigeria.