Thursday, 15 May 2008

NIREC meets, calls for acceleration for the attainment of MDGs 4 and 5

The quarterly meeting of the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC) ended last week with the council urging the governments, groups and all Nigerians, particularly the Faith-based Organizations to build a systematic platform for peace and religious harmony in Nigeria through the promotion of socio-economic justice, transparency and good governance.

This, according to the council, this would help to accelerate the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals MDGs for reducing maternal mortality and promoting child survival.

This was part of the resolution from the meeting at the Maiduguri International Hotel, which held from May 4th to 7th 2008, under the Co-Chairmanship of the Sultan of Sokoto, who is also the President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) His Eminence, Alhaji Muhammadu Sa’ad Abubakar CFR; and the President of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), His Grace Archbishop John Onaiyekan, (CON).

The council asserted that in spite of its human and material resources, Nigeria’s maternal and child morbidity and mortality rate are some of the highest in the world. It appealed to all citizens to support the government’s campaign for eradication of polio and other childhood diseases by accepting immunization. This is one of the cost-effective interventions under the integrated maternal, newborn and child health strategy of the federal ministry of health aimed at reducing the maternal and child mortality.

The council stated that pervasive poverty, denial of basic amenities, insecurity and collapse of infrastructure are some of the sources maternal and child mortality. It urged the government to increase the tempo of sustainable measures for the eradication of poverty through job and wealth creation which will channel the energies of our youths towards productive ventures.

The council acknowledged that HIV/AIDS has added to the country’s disease burden and that Nigerian youths who are the country’s hope constitute the most vulnerable group of those infected. It called on Faith-based Organizations to educate their members on the tenets and injunctions of their religion to limit the spread of HIV/AIDS and reduce the high number.

By Nnenna Ike

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