By Doosuur Iwambe
As the world marks the World Contraception Day, (WCD), Nigerian government at all levels have been urged to ensure adequate allocation of resources to stimulate availability and access to contraceptive commodities to women in all communities in Nigeria.
Speaking while addressing a virtual press conference to mark the World Conceptive Day on Thursday, Ogechi Onuoha of Marie Stopes Nigeria lamented that about 18.9percent of conceptive demand in Nigeria is still unmet.
Quoting the 2018 National Demographic Health Survey Report, (NDHS) Onuoha said that about 35percent of married women in Nigeria are demanding for family planning conceptive.
She said that out of the 35percent, only 16.2percent have access to the conceptive. ‘’the total demand of conceptive among married women in Nigeria according to the (NDHS 2018) is 35.5percent. 16.2% of that figure are using conceptive while 18.9% of that demand is yet to be met’’.
While disclosing that the budget available is not enough bridge the gap, Onuoha added that advocacy is currently ongoing with government and donor agencies to augment with what is currently on ground.
Earlier, the Country Director, Love Matters Naija, Mrs Alu Azege stated that making access to quality contraceptive services and information should be treated as a human right issue because it changes and even saves lives of women and girls.
Mrs Azege acknowledged that the wide knowledge of family planning methods has not translated to its uptake and that the health of the women, particularly those of reproductive age in Nigeria stands out with the silent epidemic of poor maternal mortality and morbidity.
She said that the mission the organization is to improve awareness of contraception and enable women to make informed decisions on their sexual and reproductive rights in essence plan the timing and spacing of their births.
‘’Our mission is to let our Nigerian women know that every pregnancy should be one that is planned, wanted, loved and cherished. That way, we engender a happy and prosperous society.
‘’In our society sex is just not an acceptable topic for conversation. To be silent about sex keeps us ignorant and it is vitally important that we talk openly about sex as a society. That is why we created this platform for every youth and women who find it difficult to talk about sex.
“Religious connotation seems to draw us back and cultural issues such as the men not supporting family planning, community misconceptions about family planning, religious undertone to family planning and also the failure to build enough confidence in the people to access quality services needed for family planning.”
The World Contraception Day, observed on 26th September every year, is an annual global campaign to improve awareness about contraception.
Daily Times reports that the campaign aims to raise awareness about birth control methods available to a woman and her partner to enable them to make an informed decision regarding their reproductive health.
This global campaign pushes for better education related to safe and protected sex so that no pregnancy is unplanned or unwanted.