Abuja – Kogi State has emerged the Best Performing State in the implementation of the World Bank-supported Accelerating Nutrition Results in Nigeria (ANRiN) project, outshining 10 other states assessed for the project’s Community-Based Nutrition Service Delivery.
The state government received the Certificate of Achievement as Best Performing State: Community-Based Nutrition Service Delivery (NSA Performance +DLI) at the 6th ANRIN Implementation Support event, held in Abuja.
The ANRiN project, supported by the World Bank, is a priority health-care project, aimed at increasing the utilisation of quality, cost-effective nutrition services for pregnant and lactating women, adolescent girls and children to reduce illnesses and enhance their overall wellbeing.
Eleven states, including Kogi, Abia, Gombe, Kaduna, Kano, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger, Oyo, Plateau, and Katsina were assessed.
The drivers of the project, who are non-state actors recruited through the World Bank’s procurement processes, noted that participating states, through the provision of basic health needs, including deworming for children (12-59 months), IFA supplementation for pregnant women, malaria care for pregnant women, among others, would be able to reduce infant and maternal mortality drastically.
The Commissioner for Health in Kogi State, Dr Zakari Usman, who spoke to the media on this feat in the health sector, said, owing to the high performance in giving basic nutrition services to women and children, the nutrition indices of Kogi State women and children were expected to increase greatly while illnesses would reduce drastically.
According to him, Kogi State’s Gross Domestic Product will also increase with increase in functional population and reduction of maternal and infant mortality, among others.
Usman explained that the project had been actively carried out in Kogi State for five years, adding that the state was able to achieve the first position because of the commitment of Governor Yahaya Bello to the project and to the revitalisation of the health sector in general.
“His Excellency, Governor Yahaya Bello, paid the commitment fund, every year, up to date.
“There was effective sensitisation of beneficiaries, diligent supervision and monitoring by the PIU, Community ownership of the project by Kogites and excellent managerial ability by the Honourable Commissioner of Health.
“The implication of this feat on the health sector of Kogi State is that the nutrition indices of the State’s women and children will increase greatly; illnesses will be reduced and it will also cause increased GDP and functional population.
“There will also be reduced maternal and infant mortality among other positive results,” Usman explained.