STUNTING growth rate has dropped from 34.7 percent to 32 percent within a period of three years, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Dr Zainab Chaula has said.
Speaking at the closing session of the sixth joint Multi-sectoral Nutrition Review (JMNR), meeting held here recently, Dr Chaula said when the fifth phase government took over during the 2015/2016 Financial year, stunting growth stood at 34.7per cent, but during the 2017/2018, it dropped to 32per cent.
According to her, this was a result of the efforts currently being undertaken by the government in ensuring that nutrition in the country was highly prioritized to ensure that people had the best health.
Recently, stakeholders in the health sector met at the JMNR meeting in Dodoma to deliberate on several issues, among them looking on the best ways to reduce stunting growth and malnutrition in the country.
Themed ‘Translating and Using Nutrition Evidence to Accelerate the Implementation of Policies and Programmes for Sustainable Development of Tanzania,’ the meeting which was organized by the Prime Minister’s Office was attended by over 300 delegates.
At the closing of the meeting, Permanent Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), Dorothy Mwaluko who represented the minister, Jennister Mhagama, told participants that the minister expressed her commitment to lower malnutrition and stunting growth by using political leaders to intensify awareness campaign on nutrition.
She also added that the government was also capitalizing on nutrition officers in all District Councils as well as investing on research pertaining to nutrition.
During the opening ceremony, Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa expressed his dismay over cases of malnutrition as well as overweight and obesity, especially on women, which he said was on the rise, reaching levels which are unacceptable on the international level.
He asked responsible authorities to look on the best ways to have them reduced in order to protect the health of the people in the country.