Media executive and Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Leadership Newspapers, Mr Dele Fanimo, has warned on population explosion impact on family planning, urging Nigerians to ensure they have family they can cater for comfortably, reports NaijaAgroNet.
Speaking during an advocacy visit to his office by members of the Family Planning Media Advocacy Working Group (FPMAWG) in Lagos, Fanimo dispelled myths and misconceptions around family planning in the country.
According to him, Nigerians must learn to plan their lives especially families so as to make certain they enjoy family lives to its fullest.
He also bemoaned the recent revelation by the National Bureau of Statistics indicating that the country now has some 198 population, describing it as a time bomb.
“The Nigerian population is 198 million and this figure has an implication on the country in all aspects of the economy. A quarter of this population is almost twice the population of Republic of Benin. The central of this is uncontrolled birth,” he said.
The COO said the implication of the Nigerian huge population can lead to increase in crime and prostitution, adding that with social dislocation, what a country gets is underdevelopment and a failed nation.
“Uncontrolled birth is unacceptable because when a man has a big family he cannot cater for, he will have to deny child A to send child B to school, leading to more miscreants, thieves, thugs and hoodlums on our streets, and the vicious circle continues.
“This is a huge problem, if we want to help the country, we must promote FP. Churches need to do more. Some of these things should form part of the Sunday sermon and mosque service.
“They need to demystify the myths and misconceptions to their members. Imagine a woman attaching child birth to inheritance. Some will say, if you live in a man’s house and no son, you will suffer when the man dies.
“Not able to cater for a large family can also lead to corruption because when you have more than you can care for, you would be force to steal,” he said.
He however called on traditional leaders, religious leaders and political leaders to help and demystify the myths and misconceptions of FP as the media cannot do it alone.
As part of contributing its quarter in creating more awareness on FP, Fanimo assured FPMAWG that Leadership Newspaper is ready to work with them.
He however urged the FPMAWG to see beyond newspaper publications but go to the rural communities, community leaders and other stakeholders to sensitize them on the importance of FP, they in turn will now be an advocate of FP.
Earlier in her address, the working group chairperson, Mrs. Umeha, noted that Family Planning (FP) has been a worldwide issue, hence the reason why world leaders, local and international donors and advocates from around the world gathered at an FP Summit in London on July 11, 2017 to discuss efforts to reach the FP 2020 goals and ensure that more women and girls around the world are able to plan their families and their future.
Nigerian government, she pointed out, made a commitment to increase the Contraceptive Prevalence Rate (CPR) from 15 percent to 27 percent by 2020 at that meeting, stressing that government at both the Federal and State have shown commitment to the provision of free FP services to the entire women of child-bearing age in the country.
The reason for this is not far-fetched as different statistics and surveys conducted around the world, have revealed that FP program when effectively done, can lead to a reduction of maternal deaths by up to 34 percent and newborn death by about 15 per cent.
The chairperson was accompanied during the advocacy visit by some members of FP Media Working Group, including Chioma Obinna of Vanguard Newspapers, and Remmy Nweke of DigitalSENSE Africa Media, publishers of NaijaAgroNet and Pastor Olusegun Omotayo Adeboye as well as Mrs Shotomiwa Olubunmi, both of Lagos Advocacy Working Group (LAWG) and Public Health Sustainable Advocacy Initiative(PHSAI), while the acting General Manager, Southern Operation at Leadership, Mrs. Angela Tony Iji, was also on attendance.
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