By: Adémólá Òrúnbon
The inability of the Nigerian government to allocate and release substantial amount of money for the provision of family planning services to women in need has been described as one of the gaps hampering the effective provision of such services in the Nigeria, Mr. Chima Azubuike has said
A family planning advocacy group, Pathfinder International has raised concern over the development, saying available statistics indicate that more still need to be done for women to effectively and efficiently access family planning services.
Azubuike made this known at a- 3 day capacity building for media editor, on Advance Family Planning (AFP), held in Abuja.
He said that in 2017, Nigerian government, through Federal Ministry of Health has committed N1.2billion, noting that constant delay and inconsistency in funds discharged has created a gap of N2.1billion.
He said Nigeria has a low modern contraceptive prevalence rate (mCPR) of 13 percent, noting that it was below the sub-saharan average of 24 percent.
He said during the last 5 years, the uses of modern methods has increased from 10 percent to 12 percent, adding that total demand for contraception has increased from 31 percent to 36 percent.
“Indeed, in Lagos, almost half of married women use a method of contraception, as compared within only 2 percent of currently married women in Sokoto and Yobe”, he said
Also speaking, the Senior Program Advisor, Pathfinder Nigeria, Dr. Sekina Amin Bello, said family planning allows people to attain their desired number of children, if any, and to determine the spacing of their pregnancies, noting it is achieved through use of contraceptive methods and the treatment of infertility.
“Indeed, it is the ability of individuals and couples to anticipate and attain their desired number of children and the spacing, and timing of their births, and it is achieved through use of contraceptive methods and the treatment of involuntary infertility “, she said
Another speaker, Seyi Bolaji, added that modern contraceptive contain hormones which could cause certain side effects in some women, saying that depending on the method being used, these may include, breast tenderness, headaches, weight gain, lack of regular menstrual bleeding and many more.
She added that fear of side effects, both real and imagined, was a major reason why women discontinue using contraception, noting that all these could result in unintended pregnancies.