Development Communications Network (DEVCOMS), an NGO, has called for increased funding of family planning services to raise the level of contraceptive use to 36 per cent by 2018.
The organisation’s media specialist, Iliya Kure, said in a paper he presented to mark 2017 Safe Motherhood Week, that current national contraceptive commodities usage was slightly above 15 per cent.
The paper is entitled `Child spacing: Key strategy to reducing maternal death – time to act.’
He said, “‘Nigerian government is off the track at federal level and state level.
“Majority of the states don’t have plan; only Kaduna planned to spend N100 million on maternal health care, and Ogun State with N20 million.
“Nigeria has failed in its commitment as the appropriate funding and investment expected to have been committed to Family Planning over the years by government has not been met.”
He recalled that Nigeria had in 2012 made a commitment to achieving 36% CRP by 2018 and invest 600 million dollars annually on family planning.
According to him, since then, Nigeria had only committed three million dollars to the programme, and now raised to four million dollars in the 2017 budget.
Kure quoted the 2013 National Demographic Health Survey, which indicated that about 576 women in every 100,000 live births die as a result of pregnancy related complications.
He added that the survey also placed contraceptive prevalence rate at 15.1% which is not up to half of the 36% target set for 2018.
Kure said more investment in family planning services would reduce maternal mortality, adding that failure to take action amounts to discrimination against women.
“When a woman dies, it is not just a loss to the newborn, but also a loss to the family as well as the nation.
“This is because the nation loses out on her contributions to social and economic development.
“Maternal mortality is a neglected tragedy, neglected because those who suffer it are neglected people with the least power and influence over how national resources shall be spent,” he added.