More than half of the children in Plateau state are malnourished, a state official has said, the News Agency of Nigeria is reporting.
The Nutrition Officer for Plateau, Moses Yusuf, said the United Nation’s Children Fund (UNICEF) mid-year review meeting, Saturday, that 66 per cent of children in the state were malnourished.
He explained that the figure was arrived at following the Standardised Monitoring of Relief and Transition (SMART) survey, conducted by the Federal Government in 2015.
Yusuf described as very ”alarming,” the level of malnutrition among children and that five out of ten children in state remain malnourished.”
According to the SMART report of 2015, over 66 per cent of children in Plateau are totally malnourished.
“The report shows that 43.7 suffer from stunting, 18.1 per cent are underweight, while 4.6 per cent are wasting,” he said.
“When you compare the 2014 with 2015 SMART survey, you will realise that the situation in Plateau is getting worse.
“So, the need for government and other relevant agencies to put all hands on deck so as to arrest this ugly trend before it gets out hand, becomes necessary.”
Yusuf further explained that with the high level of stunting in the state, children were prone to kidney, skin, eye and other endemic diseases, which might be very expensive to treat.
“Stunting is a very serious issue now in Nigeria and it is irreversible after 1000 days, meaning that it may be expensive treating it in the future.
“So, if we don’t treat preventable diseases now, it may be a serious issue handling it in the near future,” he said.
He challenged mothers and parents in general, to take the nutrition of their wards with utmost seriousness.