Non release of budgetary allocations to families requiring family planning and child spacing in Niger state through its ministry of health and hospital services is militating against adequate implementation of programmes to check unwanted pregnancies.
The coordinator of Niger State Primary Health Care Development Agency (NSPHCDA), Mrs. Dorcas Abu Talatu disclosed this at a one day Pathfinder International sponsored stakeholders meeting on child spacing for media practitioners in Niger state.
The commissioner, who said the state recently approved the sum of, N10 million out of N50 million allocated to Family Planning (FP), decried the delay in the release of allocated fund to the relevant units in the ministry.
She said other challenges of the department in the ministry is facing included; lack of dedicated funds or budget for the family planning, inadequate information, cultural and religious beliefs, limited male involvement and as well communities failure to take ownership of family planning in the state.
Dr. Faruk Jega, Country Director, Pathfinder International, who was represented by Dr. Sakina Bello said similar programme is going on simultaneously in twelve pilot states of the federation for 2020 implementation in Nigeria.
He explained that the objectives of the workshop are to get participants acquaint themselves with the Pathfinder Advance Family Planning (AFP) project , orientate and commit journalists to publication of its activities to enhance the federal government’s 27% target.
Pathfinder International Nigeria is a global leader in reproductive health, is implementing the, Advance Family Planning-Fulfilling the London Summit on Family Planning Commitments, project in partnership with the Johns Hopkins University, and funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
The advocacy is part of a larger multi-country project that is aimed at supporting advocacy efforts at the sub-national level, to ensure that family planning is prioritized through increased budgetary and implementation of relevant policies that support family planning in Nigeria.