CSOs Canvass Nutrition Departments In MDAs

Jay z

The Civil Society –Scaling Up Nutrition in Nigeria (CS-SUNN) and the Nutrition Society of Nigeria (NSN) have urged the government to urgently adopt a multi-sectoral approach to tackling malnutrition in Nigeria.

The organisations at a media roundtable on the impact on nutrition coordination, funding, and policy implementation in Abuja, called for the establishment of nutrition departments in ministries, departments (MDAs).

In a statement jointly signed by Sunday Okoronkwo, executive secretary of CS-SUNN, and Wasiu Afolabi, president of NSN, the groups stated that malnutrition is a multifaceted problem that requires the involvement of all government sectors.

„A multi-sectoral approach with central coordination is essential to addressing the complex nature of malnutrition. Each sector needs to implement programs according to its mandate and in line with the National Policy on Food and Nutrition and the Multi-sectoral Plan of Acton for its implementation.“


The civil society groups also revealed that Nigeria is facing a looming food crisis, with an estimated 26.5 million people projected to be food insecure in 2024, particularly in conflict-affected regions such as Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe states.


The civil society groups‘ key recommendations include strengthening nutrition governance at all levels of government, emphasising the importance of implementing presidential directives to establish nutrition departments within relevant ministries, departments, and agencies, and ensuring cohesive policy implementation and resource allocation for nutrition interventions. Additionally, they propose the creation of a Nutrition Investment Trust Fund to support financing initiatives to address food and nutrition insecurity.


The groups also highlighted the importance of sustaining emergency food assistance, health services, and protection for vulnerable populations, particularly during the upcoming lean season. This includes providing support to internally displaced persons (IDPs) in camps and affected host communities, as well as those in hard-to-reach areas.


According to the groups, the challenges of food and nutrition have continued unabated. CS-SUNN and NSN commended the federal government for past efforts, including the endorsement of the National Policy on Food and Nutrition in 2016, amongst others.

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