IDN NEC wants FG to guarantee optimum nutrition and health of Unity Schools students
COMMUNIQUÉ ISSUED AT THE END OF THE NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COUNCIL (NEC) MEETING OF INSTITUTE FOR DIETETICS IN NIGERIA (IDN) HELD FROM 23RD – 25TH MARCH 2022 AT THE CONFERENCE HALL, GENERAL HOSPITAL, ILORIN, KWARA STATE
The National Executive Council (NEC) Meeting of the Institute for Dietetics in Nigeria (IDN) was held at the Conference hall of General Hospital Ilorin, Kwara State from 23rd – 25th March, 2022. The meeting which was declared open by the Kwara State Hon. Commissioner for Health Dr. Raji Rasak, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Health, had in attendance officials of the Kwara State Government including the Head of Service who delivered a goodwill message.
At the Meeting were National Officers of IDN, Chairmen of IDN State Chapters and delegates from across the States of the Federation. Also, in attendance were the Chief Medical Director of General Hospital Ilorin and officials of the Kwara State College of Health and Technology, Offa who presented a brief on the nutrition programme of the college to NEC.
The Meeting noted with concern the current inflation in the Naira especially as it affects the purchasing power of ordinary Nigerians, which has affected the nutritional status of the people. The meeting called on government to come up with incentives that will boost food production in the country. In this way, the current poor nutritional status of the people will be ameliorated.
The Meeting observed that there is need for appropriate planning, preparation and service of meals for the boarding students especially students of Federal Unity Colleges so as to guarantee optimum nutrition and health of the students. The meeting also noted the need to serve appropriate meals to inmates of correctional centers across the country. To this end, the meeting urged Federal Government of Nigeria through her Ministries of Education and Interior to appoint at least one dietician each to each of the Federal Unity Colleges and Correctional Centres in the Country.
The Meeting noted that Kwara State is one of the malnutrition burden states of Nigeria where the Accelerating Nutrition Results in Nigeria (ANRiN) project is in place. The meeting however observed that the ANRiN project that is out to address the burden of malnutrition through utilization of quality, cost-effective nutrition services for pregnant and lactating women, adolescent girls and children under five years of age is not being coordinated by nutrition experts in Kwara State. The Meeting was of the view that since it is only the deep that can call into the deep, the coordination of ANRiN project by non-nutrition experts will impede the optimum performance of the project.
The Meeting noted that there are few dieticians in the employment of Kwara State inspite of the fact that malnutrition and other dietary related aliment are rife in Kwara State. What is more, the meeting also found out that the state nutrition programme is being coordinated by a non-nutrition expert. The Meeting is of view that there is urgent need to appoint dieticians by Kwara State Government into all the hospitals and health centres across the state. In this way, the gospel of adequate dietary practice and observance of appropriate nutritional lifestyle will be taking to the grass roots. The meeting also urged the government of Kwara State to do what is right, just and fair by appointing Nutritionists and Dieticians to coordinate Nutrition programmes in the state.
The Meeting lauded and commended the disposition of Kwara State Government towards improving the nutritional status of her citizens especially the children through the home grown school feeding programme. The Meeting however enjoined the state to be conscious of the nutritional status of her leaders especially the Governor of the state by engaging dieticians as part of the government house meal preparation team. In this way, meals that are being prepared at the government house will be adequate in all facets of nutritional requirement.
The Meeting urged State Governors across the country to price high matters of Nutrition as it is the bed rock of good health and well being. To this end, Governments across the states are urged to engage the services of Nutritionists and Dieticians in the handling of nutrition programmes.
The Meeting appreciated the Governor and Government of Kwara State for identifying with the professional body of Dieticians during the meeting.
TAJUDEEN OLUTOPE AHMED, Esq., FIDN National President