THE Prime Minister, Kassim Majaliwa, said the government would enact a law to compel regional authorities to set aside funds from their revenue collection to implement national nutrition plan that controls stunting growth in babies countrywide.
Equally, he directed the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children to allocate some funds to purchase ‘nutritional supplements’ from the Medical Stores Department (MSD) in the public health facilities. Addressing the 5th Joint Multispectral Nutrition Review (JMNR) meeting here on Tuesday, the Premier said the new law would address a number of challenges facing the national plan largely tied to funds.
“I direct government leaders from different levels to fully take part in the campaign to control malnutrition in their respective areas,” he stressed.
Themed ‘Towards Industrialized Economy: Good Nutrition is Fundamental in Sustaining Effective Human Capital Development,’ the meeting brought together different key stakeholders in National Nutrition Plan to discuss recommendation from the 4th JMNR.
Mr Majaliwa said the government was determined to kick out malnutrition from the country, adding that the State would still create a conducive environment for all stakeholders willing to contribute into national nutrition plan.
On her part, the Minister for Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Ms Ummy Mwalimu, hinted that plans were underway to ensure that all public Hospitals offer important services in nutrition.
She said recent statistics indicate that about 106,000 children suffer from severe acute malnutrition in the country and cited identifying the source of the challenge and availability of medication which should be the main concerns.
The minister pointed out other challenges facing regions in the implementation of the national nutrition plan as low level of awareness amongst the executives, policy and decision makers and politicians on nutrition.