The Nutritional Officer of UNICEF in Ebonyi, Mr Cyprain Ogbonna, gave the encouragement to people on Saturday in Abakaliki during an event to mark the starting of the 2020 celebration of World Breastfeeding week.
The theme of the World Breastfeeding Week 2020 is “Support breastfeeding for a healthier planet”.
The event is marked every year between Aug. 1 and Aug. 7 to raise awareness on the importance of breastfeeding for mothers and infants.
Ogbonna said that adequate breastfeeding had, over the years , prevented several childhood diseases and brought lifelong positive benefits associated with child spacing.
He said that other benefits include: risk reduction for some breast and ovarian cancers as well as hypertension.
He described breast milk as a nature-given-first food that needed to be preserved for its undebatable benefits to a mother and her baby.
He added that the milk was a critical part of a sustainable food system.
He said that it would be best to start breastfeeding within one hour of birth and exclusively done for the first six months of life, after which mothers should introduce appropriate complementary foods to her baby for two years and beyond.
He stated that misuse of breast milk substitutes should be condemned.
Ogbonna said: “Mothers are recommended to breastfeed their child or children within 30 minutes of birth.
“While mothers doing exclusive breastfeeds go for the first six months of life.
“Also mother or caregiver timely introduces complementary feeding based on local food products at six months while continuing breastfeeding up to two years and beyond,” he said.
Also, the Nutrition Manager of UNICEF in Enugu, Hanifa Namusoke, said that she had championed the cause in Ebonyi to increase the valve and improve the well being of mother and child.
“Breast milk is complete for a healthier planet and that is why WHO and UNICEF recommend optimal infant and young child feeding practices with emphasis on early initiation of breastfeeding within one hour of birth,” Namusoke said.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Peter Dada (NAN)
High turnout of students as schools resume for exit class in FCT
There was a high turnout of students as schools resumed in Abuja following the Federal Government’s directive that schools should reopen for students in exit classes.
Some students were seen at their schools on Tuesday observing the COVID-19 safety protocols stipulated by the Federal Government.
Social distancing was observed in class rooms, hand wash points set at different locations in the schools and students were mandated to wear their face masks.
The Minister of State for Education, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajuiba, who monitored the resumption in Abuja expressed satisfaction with the level of compliance with the COVID-19 protocols.
“We are happy with the level of compliance by the students. It shows that they are aware of the current pandemic and taking measures to avoid the spread of the virus.
“I was at Federal Government College, Apo and can tell you that the students are fully aware of what they need to do to keep safe. They are fully prepared and are conscious of the safety,” he said.
Nwajuiba stressed that actions would be taken to address infrastructure decay in the schools.
Also, Mr Sonny Echono, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, said the ministry was working on modalities to maintain facilities in schools through the employment of skilled specialists such as plumbers, electricians and the rest.
Echono commended the students in taking precautionary measures to combat the spread of the virus.
Students also expressed happiness for returning to school while praying that the pandemic would end soon to allow other classes to resume.
One of the students, Amanda Onoja, a Senior Secondary School 3 student of Federal Government College, Bwari pledged to ensure that proper safety measures were observed during and after the WAEC examination.
Also, Miss Chichi Ilochi, another student, said she was excited that the school had finally reopen, stressing that she was fully prepared to take the upcoming examination.
“I feel much exited that we are back to school. I have been preparing for this examinations and I think the decision to open school is right.
“My dream of leaving secondary school this year has come to reality. At first, when the pandemic started, I have lost hope of graduating from secondary school this year but now I think I am happy,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that some of the schools visited include Federal Government College, Apo, Federal Government College, Kwali and Federal Government College, Bwari.
However, Federal Government College, Kwali seemed not prepared for resumption as the school environments still look unkempt even when students were all ready for resumption.
Edited By: Abiodun Esan/Isaac Aregbesola (NAN)
APC working towards having data bank for members – Sen. Ali
Sen. Abba Ali, a member of the APC National Caretaker Committee, says the party is working towards having a data bank for all its members.
Ali, wno is the committee member representing North West, stated this when he received the Kangiwa Ward APC Chairman who paid him a congratulatory visit in Katsina on Tuesday.
According to him, when the names of members are captured, it will make access to details of members easy through the punch of a button.
He said that the data bank would carry along all members including the stakeholders and also make it easy for administrative purposes.
The member reiterated the committee’s commitment in bringing together and uniting all members, adding that reconciliatory process was on and achieving the desired goals.
“Among the programmes introduced by the APC led government include introduction of Digital economy, new N-power programme, Special Public Work consisting of 774,000 Jobs.
Ali assured that as economic development had been part of the top priority of the government, “we will continue to pray and support the rare economic initiatives designed to change the future of incoming generations.
“I am appealing to all Nigerians to support economic transformation of President Muhammadu Buhari by judicious utilization of the financial packages received from Federal Government.
“Recently, we witnessed reduction of attacks on innocent Nigerians from armed bandits, this is achieved through the tireless efforts and sacrifices of our security agencies who are out to protect lives and properties.
“By the special Grace of God, soon the insecurity will be over and all IDPs across the country will return to their respective destinations to continue with their normal day to day activities,” he said.
He said Nigerians should be expecting a new reformed APC, eagerly waiting to meet the yearning and aspirations of the electorate.
“APC in the North West and the National Caretaker Committee are working so hard for the spirit of oneness and a greater Nigeria.
“I urged all Nigerians to continue supporting this noble course of APC which is working for the overall interest of the citizens,” he said.
Edited By: Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)
EEDC nabs 2 suspected electricity installation vandals
The Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC) says it nabbed two notorious electricity installation vandals in Osisioma community near Aba, Abia, along Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway.
EEDC’s Head of Corporate Communications, Mr Emeka Ezeh, told newsmen in Enugu on Tuesday, that the duo had been handed over to the Osisioma Police Station, Abia, for interrogation and further investigation.
Ezeh said that the two suspected vandals were caught red handed and apprehended on Aug. 3, by members of Osisioma Electricity Committee while vandalising electricity cables belonging to the company.
According to Ezeh, last month, a suspect was arrested by youths of Amichi community for vandalizing Ebenasa 300KVA 33/0.415KV distribution substation, located at Amichi.
“Part of the items recovered from the suspects included: 4 feeder pillar bars, 4 feeder pillar units and 3 feeder pillar fuses.
“It was also gathered that the suspects’ accomplice fled and is currently at large.
“However, effort is on to get him arrested along with the identified buyer, who is in possession of 300mm 2 x 4 single core upriser cables, 10 meters earthen wire, as well as some bolts and nuts,” he said.
In a similar development, the EEDC spokesman said that one suspect was arrested by members of Ogbu Edda community, Ebonyi, for vandalising a 300KVA 33/0.415KV distribution substation, located in the community.
“The suspect was caught in possession of 150mm-2 upriser cable and has been handed over to the Afikpo South Divisional Police Headquarters for further investigations,’’ he said.
Ezeh said that the company had been expressing concerns, over the rising cases of vandalism within its network, and had appealed to customers to be more vigilant in ensuring that the installations serving them were not vandalised.
The EEDC spokesman however, commended the youths of Amichi, people of Ogbu Edda community, Ebonyi and members of Osisioma electricity committee, for their support in apprehending the suspected vandals.
Ezeh said that the company would work closely with the police to ensure that the suspects were prosecuted so that the law could take its course.
“The activities of these vandals not only affect our organisation’s finances, but adversely impact on the quality of services to our customers who are subjected to darkness and untold hardship whenever the electrical installations serving them are vandalised.
“We are not relenting in our effort in tackling the growing trend of vandalism and also call on well-meaning and law-abiding customers to join hands in this fight,’’ he said.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Maureen Atuonwu (NAN)
Plateau PDP set for state congress – Acting chairman
Mr Yakubu Chocho, Acting Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Plateau, says all is now set for the state congress to elect new leaders of the party in the state.
Chocho told News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Jos that arrangements had been put in place to receive the national officers of the party who would conduct the elections.
Consequently, after the expiration of their tenure on May 10, the state executives of the party were constituted into caretaker committee to act for three months.
The acting chairman said that the party had received directives from its national secretariat that the congress would hold on Aug. 8 or Aug.12.
According to him, the state is waiting for the national body of the party to conduct the congress.
“We will also ensure that all delegates keep to social distancing , wearing of face mask and washing of hands. Efforts will be made to provide adequate security for peaceful congresses,” he said.
Chocho added that the party was ready to receive the elected leaders who would be in-charge of its affairs without interference from the state officials.
Edited By: Chinyere Bassey and Abdullahi Yusuf (NAN)