In recognition of their unequalled collaboration with Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and Non-Governmental Organisation (NGOs) on Family Planning also known child birth spacing budget, three members of the Kaduna state House of Assembly were honoured by a leading health advocacy group, Family Health Advocates in Nigeria Initiative (FHANI) – with support from Pathfinder International.
The lawmakers were Chairman House committee on Appropriation, Ahmed Mohammed; Chairman House Committee on Women Affairs, Haliru Dangana and Chairman House Committee on Health, Isaac Zankhai.
At the ceremony in Kaduna, northern Nigeria, acting Chairman of FHANI, Bala Mohammed Tijjani, thanked both the Executive and Legislative arms of government for approving budgets for child birth spacing in the state.
The acting Chairman who briefed the Lawmakers on activities of FHANI, as related to budget in the last three years, noted with delight, the smooth passage of child spacing budget line in the House, which he said, would not have been possible without the commitment and understanding of the legislators.
Mr. Tijjani informed the legislators that one of the easiest ways of reducing maternal Mortality in the world, is through child birth spacing.
He stated that Child Spacing partners in 2016 met the state Governor, Nasir El- Rufa’i with an alarming figure on maternal mortality rate in the state, which led to the creation of the budget line.
“It is gratifying to note that the House endorsed all that was presented to it by the Executive. This singular act is worthy of commendation and should not go unnoticed. Therefore, this decoration of honour is to demonstrate that FHANI is really appreciative of the Commitment and investment of the House to its course,” he said.
In a remark, the acting Secretary of FHANI, Iliya Kure stressed the need for all hands to be on deck noting that Women were dying for avoidable reasons.
Kure, who exposed the lawmakers to child birth spacing Costed Implementation Plan (CIP) tasked them to continue to take women into account when reviewing annual budgets.
Responding, the lawmakers thanked FHANI for the honour, which they said came to them as a surprise.
According to the Chairman House Committee on Appropriation, Mr. Mohammed, “any issue that has to do with Health would not be taken lightly,” while his colleague for the Women Affairs, Mr. Dangana said, he was “happy to know that the little the House was doing was noticed,” contrary to their belief.
On his part, the Chairman House Committee on health, Dr.Isaac Zankhai reaffirmed that “health and education would continue to remain on the front burner of the policy and Programmes of the state government.”
He assured FHANI that the doors of the Lawmakers were always opened.
The State Reproductive Health Coordinator, Nafisat Musa, thanked the Lawmakers for honouring the invitation, despite their tight schedules, as well as FHANI, for its advocacy activities.
She assured the Legislature that “fund released would be well utilized for the benefit of the end users.”