The Nigerian government is deeply concerned about the staggering loss of $1.5 billion in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) annually, attributed to inadequate essential nutrients in the population’s diet. This pressing issue has raised alarm bells as it threatens to impede human capital development and diminish productivity, thereby posing a significant economic challenge.
The challenges are further exacerbated by the adverse economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which have disproportionately affected the nation’s poorest and most vulnerable households, making access to sufficient and nutritious food even more challenging.
In response to this critical situation, the Federal Government has launched a coordinated effort through the Federal Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning to address the issue head-on, with the aim of achieving positive outcomes.
During the 53rd Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference of the Nutrition Society of Nigeria (NSN) in Abuja, Abubakar Bagudu, the Minister for Budget and Economic Planning, emphasized the government’s commitment to combat malnutrition effectively.
The government is taking decisive steps by integrating nutrition into its National Development Plan (NDP 2021-2025) and “The Nigeria Agenda 2050.” Bagudu stressed that this commitment extends to ensuring optimal nutrition status for all Nigerians, with a particular focus on vulnerable groups, as outlined in the National Multi-sectoral Plan of Action for Food and Nutrition (NMPFAN 2021-2025). The government’s resolve is to address malnutrition comprehensively and make significant strides toward enhancing the overall health and well-being of its citizens.