The United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund in Borno has called on mothers to prioritise breastfeeding, saying food insecurity is on the rise.
The Chief of Field Office, UNICEF Maiduguri office, Phuong Nguyen, said this in a statement on Thursday during the inauguration of the 2021 World Breastfeeding Week at the Mohammad Shuwa Memorial Hospital, Maiduguri.
She said, “Food insecurity and job loss are on the rise because of the COVID-19 pandemic. With the disposable income of millions of families threatened, investments in breast milk substitutes will further deplete scarce resources for struggling families.
“Supporting new mothers to breastfeed exclusively for at least six months is the best method of child nutrition in these critical times.”
Nguyen noted that in addition to placing priority on breastfeeding, the public and private sectors should support new mothers with six-month paid maternity leave.
Also, the wife of the state governor, Dr. Falmata Zulum, said, “Breastfeeding is the total food security for infants. It is readily available and helps mothers to bond with their children. Breastfeeding is not just our obligation; it is a divine gift to babies and the world in the interest of humanity.”