‘Family planning, key to achieving SDGs’

Chairman, Advocacy Network of Nigeria, Alhaji Salahuddeen Busairi has urged that family planning be a concern of all, indicating that it was a key to the success of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Busairi spoke at the organisation’s feedback meeting with family planning stakeholders in Ibadan on its advocacy visits to heads of the 33 local governments in Oyo State and Ministry of Local Government Affairs.

Busairi, who said the full meaning of family planning need to be comprehended by all, said that the advocacy became imperative because family planning was lumped with other issues under reproductive health budget.

According to him, “even where monies are allocated to family planning, it is often difficult to identify and access such money. Many people are yet to realise the importance of family planning to maternal mortality reduction and child health care.”

He said the advocacy visits to get family planning budget line established in the 2016 local government annual budgets.

Chairman, Nigerian Medical Association, Oyo State branch, Dr Muideen Olatunji, who urged the group not to relent on its efforts on family planning promotion, assured of NMA’s support to boost Nigeria’s contraceptive prevalence rate to at least 45 per cent.

Representative of Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, Pastor Zacheeus Adelaja, saying that Christian faith does not support abortion, said people should rather avail themselves of family planning services from trained personnel.

Adelaja, while declaring that family planning was important for the progress of the family, urged all Nigerians to become advocates for family planning.

Federation of Muslim Women’s Associations in Nigeria (FOMWAN) representative, Alhaja M. A Adedeji said the group is keen on reduction of maternal mortality expressed concern on cases of motherless babies.

Adedeji who assured that resistance to family planning among the Muslim community was also reducing, said the group was ensuring that women in purdah also know and understand the need for proper child spacing so that they do not end up with children they cannot take care of.

According to her, “family planning is not for reducing number of children, but rather economically planning ones family. It pays to do this.”