By Ann Ngbea
Benue State Ministry of Health and Human Services has pledged to support sexual and reproductive health policy for better response to the intervention services and issues.
Commissioner for the ministry, Dr Joseph Ngbea, made the pledge at the Sexual and Reproductive Health Technical Working Group Policy Validation meeting at State Ministry of Health Conference Hall, Makudi.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr Andrew Amee, the commissioner said that sexual and reproductive health were essential components of health that affects many in the society, hence, the need to support a framework that would increase access to sexual reproductive health commodities to move the health sector forward.
He stated the ministry’s determination to partner relevant organisations on sexual reproductive health education and reduction of gender-based violence among vulnerable women and girls.
The commissioner also thanked Heartland Alliance International for supporting the programme and assured them of government’s readiness to make the programme work for maximum impact of Benue people.
In his remark, Chairman Technical Working Group for the State Sexual and Reproductive Health and Director, Public Health, Dr Terna Kur acknowledged the importance of the programme in improving health and minimising gender-based violence, saying the technical working group would perfect the document and develop a plan to move the state forward.
Also speaking, State Team Leader, Heartland Alliance International, Miss Ngozika Ogbonna stated that it was expected of the Ministry of Health to foster partnership with other agencies to advance the implementation of reproductive health services and programme and operate a distinct budget line for reproductive programme in the state.
On his part, State Focal Person, Sexual Reproductive Health in the Ministry of Health, Mr Aondowase Apinega called on all relevant sectors and working groups to support interventions aimed at raising awareness on the available reproductive health services to ensure consistency of actions in the state.