The Vote Of Thanks Of The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry Of Health Mr. A. M. Abdullahi On The Occasion Of The Ministeral Press Briefing Of The 2020 World Breastfeeding Week Celebration, Abuja, Tuesday, 4th August, 2020

PROTOCOL

Nigeria is proudly on top at any global initiative that gears towards National socio-economic development. As it relates to the decades of annual World Breastfeeding Week commemoration, our babies, mothers, and caregivers deserve the honour to be herald today as the theme is “Support Breastfeeding for a Healthier planet”.

On behalf of my Honourable Minister, Permanent Secretary and Health sector team with the support of the 2020 World Breastfeeding Week Planning Committee comprising relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies, Partners and CSOs, I thank you all for celebrating, advocating, and supporting breastfeeding for a Healthier Nigeria.

In my privileged honour to celebrate the importance of breastfeeding to the Nigerian child, mother, family, and nation, I hope our concerted efforts will yield the dividend of improved exclusive breastfeeding rate for Nigeria. May I use this medium to remind us that the advent of COVID-19 has further altered the dynamics of optimal breastfeeding through its secondary effect on household livelihood, fear of viral transmission during breastfeeding and undue exploitation by producers and marketers of breast milk substitutes (BMS). The implications on planetary health is in the likelihood of forcing our mothers to feel that BMS is the better than BREASTMILK.

This 2020 celebration is using the other innovative means due to social and physical gathering restrictions from COVID-19 pandemic to inform all that BREASTMILK IS COMPARABLE TO NONE OTHER BMS. So let protect, promote and support our mothers to breastfeed our babies optimally. So celebrate by listening through the multiple media communication channels available in your domain because the usual modalities-rally, meetings, sensitization, symposium is not possible this year. Almost all National TV & Radios and social media platforms are singing breastfeeding as song. Any breastfeeding challenges/difficulties should be channelled to the health team in the facilities, community and workplace for professional support.

Let’s support mothers/caregivers to access breastfeeding support and services from the Government and Legislation, Family and social network, Health Care System, Workplace and Employment and Response from Emergency/Crisis surrounding them.

Thank you all as we scale up the message of ‘Start Strong Exclusive breastfeeding for better Future” in not only the 11 States but also the remnant 26 States in Nigeria that was launched last year by Her Excellency, Wife of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Hajia Aisha Muhammadu Buhari..

FMOH Agencies

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