Stakeholders Advised to Use Social Media Influencers/Entertainers to Promote Family Planning.

The Wife of the Lagos State Governor, Dr Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu has urged stakeholders to make use of more entertainment concepts and social media influencers to get more people to embrace family planning.

Dr Sanwo-Olu who was the Special guest of honour at an event commemorating this year’s World Contraception Day in Ikeja pointed out that it would not be out of place to deploy sports and entertainment to achieve more participation in family planning as many people watch entertainment programmes like soap operas.

“I therefore call on all stakeholders to join forces and chart a course towards effective funding of family planning services in Lagos State. Ladies and gentlemen, as we progress in this event, I implore us to look within and see how we as an organised private sector, institutions, networks, philanthropists, and the media can make a significant difference in the lives of our women and their families,” she said.

The Wife of the Governor who suggested that more advocacy should be carried out in the language the people understand, noted that many women in the State who want to delay or avoid pregnancy are currently not using any form of modern contraception, and the goal of government is to reach these women, their partners and many others who are yet to understand the need for, and benefits of family planning.

Dr Sanwo-Olu insisted that the socio-economic benefits of family planning lead to female empowerment and economic enhancement.

She said: “Families that have the number of children they can afford to train are able to devote more resources to providing them with adequate food, education, clothing, shelter and other necessities. “Family planning enables women to pursue their educational and career aspirations, acquire more wealth, and in the long run, contribute to socio-economic development of their immediate communities”.

Wife of the Lagos Governor, Dr Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu and stakeholders at the event.

21% Increase in Use of Contraceptives Recorded in Lagos this year.

The Lagos State Government says an increase in the use of contraceptives from eighteen percent last year to twenty one percent currently has been recorded in the State

The Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi who made this known at
at an event to commemorate the 2021 World Contraception Day in Ikeja area of the State said statistics indicate that in the last six years, the State had averted about 167,000 unintended pregnancies, 59,000 abortions and 1,100 maternal deaths as a result of growing campaigns for the adoption of modern Contraceptive Prevalence Rate.

Though the World Contraception Day is observed on the 26th of September annually, stakeholders converged to assess the impact of family planning and formulate ways to close identified gaps in Lagos State at the event
themed; Family Planning in a New Lagos: A Catalytic Pillar for Female Empowerment and Socio-Economic Development

While commending donors and partners for their role in funding, procurement and distribution of commodities in the Country, Prof Abayomi stated that for sustainable results to be achieved, deliberate steps must be taken towards creating enabling environment for indigenous private sector investment in Family Planning programming.

The Commissioner also described Family planning as a tool, pointed out that increasing access to family planning is an investment.

He stated that “Family planning is also a tool for women empowerment because increasing access to family planning is an investment and for every dollar spent, three dollars are gained in benefits.”

The representative of one of the implementing partners, Dr. Taiwo Johnson, who noted that Lagos is making giant strides in meeting the 74 percent target of contraception rate towards achieving the national contraceptive goals, announced that stakeholders are working to expand access to family planning information and services

“There is still more grounds to be covered especially with regards to the ever growing population of Lagos State, migration from different part of the country, reduction in donor funding, COVID disruption, reduction in national funding for family planning”.

On his part, the representative of the United Nations Population Fund, UNFPA, Dr Omolaso Omosehin, stressed that
family planning can be employed to achieve gender equality and all the Sustainable Development Goals.

“Family planning remains one of the most cost effective strategies to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals 1,2,4 and 10, and especially goal 3. The appropriate use of family planning by women could reduce chances of dying from pregnancy related causes by 30 per cent” he said.

Dr. Omosehin emphasized that an investment in family planning would truly transform the economies of households, communities and countries.

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