At least 700 women out of every 10,000 deliveries die annually in Lafia, the Nasarawa State capital in one of the country’s worst cases of maternal mortality.
The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Daniel Iya, who gave this information during an interview with Saturday Punch said the number was higher than the national average in the north-central zone.
He said Nasarawa State like any other state got $1.5m under the “Save One Million Lives” initiative established by the former President, Goodluck Jonathan.
While expressing worry over the high rate of maternal mortality in the state, Iya said the government was disturbed over the situation, stressing that more efforts needed to be intensified to improve medical facilities in the state.
Iya confirmed that out of the 700 primary health care centres across the state, only few were dysfunctional.
He said efforts had been put in place by the state government to ensure that all the health care centres in the 13 local government areas and other medical facilities were repositioned towards curbing the trend.
The commissioner insisted that his ministry was making efforts to sanitise the health sector by tackling quackery in the state.
He said the government had decided not to ban traditional medical practitioners in the state but to sensitise them to offer safer services to their patients.
Meanwhile, the Emir of Minna, Alhaji Umar Bahago, has called for citizens’ engagement in service delivery in the health sector to reduce the rise of maternal mortality in Niger State.
Bahago said this when a non-governmental organisation, White Ribbon Alliance, paid him a courtesy visit at his palace on Friday.
Bahago said the state government had intensified its effort in the employment of more medical personnel for better service delivery.
While commending the governor’s wife, Dr. Amina Bello, for introducing ‘Mama Kit’ in the state, Bahago pledged his support for the activities of the Alliance.
“We commend your effort and we are in total support of your activities especially as it has to do with health and the betterment of our people”, he declared.
Earlier, the National Coordinator, WRA, Mr. Tonte Ibraye, commended the Governor, Abubakar Bello, for strengthening about 200 health care facilities in the state and creating 70 new ones.
He lamented that 28 per cent of pregnant women in the state do not have access to good health facilities.
Ibraye added that because of the neglect that had given rise to maternal mortality in the state, there was need for the government to remain accountable and deliver on promises to ensure that citizens, especially women are engaged in policy implementation.