Nutrition Society of Nigeria sets to tackle malnutrition in Taraba
Jethro Yerga, Jalingo
The Nutrition Society of Nigeria (NSN), Taraba State Chapter has concluded arrangement to begin earnest fight against malnutrition and other related issues in Taraba State.
In line with this development, the association, last Tuesday, 6th September, 2022 officially inaugurated its maiden EXCO members at the Conference Hall of Specialist Hospital Jalingo, who will oversee the affairs of the association to ensure that it succeeds in its set goals.
Those inaugurated include; Professor Grace Otitoju of Federal University Wukari as the President/Chairperson, Bello Yunusa as Secretary, Mrs. Grace Steven Assistant Secretary/Welfare while Mrs.Giwa was inaugurated as the Treasurer.
Others are Mr. Paul as Public Relation Officer (PRO) and Mr. Okro as the Financial Secretary respectively.
Delivering a speech at the occasion, the outgoing Taraba State President of the association, Mr. Bayo Bhadmus said the association was working hand in hand with so many live Ministries, Unions and Non Governmental Organization, (NGO) that have nutrition as one of their objectives to enable it effectively reach out to the target audience.
Mr. Bayo who identified ignorance as the major cause of malnutrition which he said is claiming so many lives especially the lives of infants and children under 5 years, added that with the official inauguration of the EXCO members of the association in the state, the association would remain at the fore front as foot soldiers of intense campaign on nutrition activities in the state.
He congratulated the new EXCO members and expressed confidence that they would work tirelessly using their wealth of experience to ensure that every individual in Taraba State is of sound nutritious state.
In his acceptance speech, the newly inaugurated president, Prof. Grace Otitoju, appreciated members of the association for giving her the mandate to lead the association at such a crucial period when the intervention of the association in the state in the area of nutrition was needed most.
While pledging that the new EXCO under her leadership would do everything possible to justify the confidence reposed in them, Prof. Grace revealed that her administration would ensure that it brings into the association, all the para medicals along side nutritionists and diartricians to work hand in hand to achieve the desired goals.
She stated that the association would embark on several nutrition programs including sensitization, training and retraining of women especially on exclusive breast feeding to enable them know the benefit of feeding their children exclusively from zero to six month.
“We will be going down to the grassroots to meet with women not only in the hospitals but also in the rural areas. In their churches and market squares where we shall be organizing them to practically teach them about nutrition.
“Also, wherever we have issues bordering on nutrition and or on nutrition deficiency diseases, we will stand up as a group and go right there and offer our helping hands.
“Taraba State has a lot of food. Recently, as a researcher I went to eight Local Government Areas in the State including Takum and Gassol where I discovered cassava and beans in which I was able to use them to produce “Moimoi”, a local African beans Cake full of Vitamins and Protein. I named it “Casmoi”.
“We were able to teach some women how to produce it and today, they are producing it themselves. Their children and other People are benefiting from it. Our people have the food but they don’t know what they will do to be able to derive the maximum benefit of these foods. Gradually we shall put our people through”. She explained.
In his speech at the occasion, the National President, Nutrition Society of Nigeria NSN, Professor Wasiu Afolabi of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Abeokuta, commended the outgoing EXCO for their earnest efforts towards sustaining the association in the state and urged them to continue to support the new EXCO to lift the association to a greater height.
The National President who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Taraba State Planing Commission, Sylvester Danjuma, the Technical Committee Chairman, Taraba State Food and Nutrition Committee, appreciated donor Partners such as African Development Bank ADB, UNICEF and others for continuously supporting NSN.
In their separate remarks, several heads of unions withing the state, the Commissioner of Health, Hon. Innocent Vakhai, who was represented by the Director of planning and budgeting committee of food and nutrition and the former Provost, College of Agriculture Jalingo, Dr. Watchab, all highlighted the significance of NSN in the state and pledged to support the society withing the limit of their powers.
Meanwhile, the Oath of Office was administered on the newly elected officials by Barrister Mercy Sambo.