MAMAYE SPEARHEADS CAMPAIGN FOR CHANGE IN THE NIGERIA HEALTH SECTOR
Nigeria, typically referred as the giant of Africa and seemingly, Africa’s biggest economy is a country to focus on. More recently, the ERGP has been a focal point with particular discussions relating to “Investing in the people of Nigeria”. With so bogus a budget year in, year out, one would marvel at the little we appropriate to healthcare for our people.
The population of Nigeria continues to increase geometrically and allocations to health sector dimishes yearly relative to budget size. As a matter of fact, Nigeria is encountered by multifaceted health challenges ranging from maternal health, assessibility to primary healthcare, low human capital, shortage of health personnel, poorly equipped medical facilities, inadequacy of healthcare facilities, infectious diseases control, vaccine preventable diseases, mental health and malnutrition crisis. This is evident as women and children continue to die due to poor investment in the health sector and poor medical attention.
Strategically, as a follow-up to the recent success of the appropriation of 1% of the consolidated revenue fund to healthcare which was evident in the 2018 appropriation bill recently passed by the Nigerian senate, coalition of Civil Society organisations spearheaded by MamaYe – EVIDENCE FOR ACTION, launched a campaign with the HashTag #FundNaijaHealth on Thursday 17th, May 2018 to amplify Nigerians demand that the Government should invest more in the health sector by implementing the Abuja Declaration of 15% budgetary allocation to health sector both at national and state levels. Expectedly, over 1 hundred individuals and organizations joined this campaign to drive home the advocacy for an increased allocation to healthcare in Nigeria with a more focused drive towards Lagos state which serves as the main economic hub of the country and pacesetter on many fronts
At a well attended Health Stakeholders dialogue and Campaign launch hosted in Lagos State at the Citi-Heights Hotel, Ikeja on Thursday tagged “Enhancing Health Budget Performance and Financing Options in Lagos State”, Mamaye made specific critical demands with regards to access to healthcare, publishing of health budget, increment of budgetary allocation for health to 15%, focus on vaccine-preventable diseases, skill set of health workers and improved maternal health all achievable through adequate funding of the health sector.
Dignitaries at the launching of the campaign were:
– Hon. Commissioner, Ministry of Health
– Hon. Commissioner, Ministry of Finance
– Hon. Commissioner, Ministry of Eco Planning and Budget
– Chairman, House Committee on Budget
– GM, LSHMA ( Dr Peju Adenusi)
– Country Director MamaYeE4A ( Dr Tunde Segun)
– LASAM Co-Chair ( Barrister Ayo Adebusoye) ,
among others who highlighted challenges and way out of poor health services in Nigeria.
The high point of the launching was the unveiling of the Campaign’s Hash tag #FundNaijaHealth by Hon. Commissioner for Health.
Some notable messages on campaign postcards and social media platforms were:
– Government to #FundNaijaHealth and progressively increase the annual health budget until the recommended 15% target is achieved.
– Government to recruit, train and place midwives and nurses in every PHC.
– Government to #FundNaijaHealth through timely release of funds for adequate stocking of medical consumables in our PHCs.
– Efficient funding of the health sector is crucial to achieving better health and wellbeing for everyone @MamaYeNigeria want mothers to deliver healthy babies with the quality of care they deserve!
– Government to provide timely resources through the health budgets and MUST be held accountable for supportive policies and enabling environment for women’s health needs
– Essential health services should be available to everyone, regardless of their income. To do this, health needs to be a high political priority and receive timely funding to make it happen.
According to Dr Olamide Okulaja, the historic “Abuja Declaration” has never been met by African Policy makers except in Tanzania and fulfilling it by our Policy Makers in Nigeria will make a difference for millions of Nigerians who die needlessly from lack of access to basic healthcare and could save over 3million mothers and children under the age of 5 by year 2022.
He further stressed that government have huge interest in economic affairs compared to the health sector.
“We must be innovative in order to maximise health budget”.
Our health sector is one of the greatest solutions to our economic crisis if well-funded as it will leads to revenue generation, job creation & investment, skill acquisition, road construction and general security.
“We should champion investment from other sector to health sector.
The Hon. Commissioner for health implored all stakeholders in every sector to collaborate with MamaYe- E4A to promote the advocacy and diversification towards saving lives and making the government release budgetary allocation to health sector as deemed fit.
“We should not see Health as wealth alone but as Life also “.
The #FundNaijaHealth campaign has only just begun.
All relevant stakeholders are encouraged to join this worthy, life saving campaign to rescue our health sector from collapse.
We are the PEOPLE, we are the VOICE, we can make it COUNT.. #FundNaijaHealth today!