•Omar said that regardless of the milestones made by the county including employing nutritionists, malnutrition is still prevalent.
•Deputy Governor Ahmed Mukhtar said the county is in the forefront in addressing the challenges of malnutrition through Department of Health and other departments.
Wajir First Lady Kheira Omar has called on all partners to join hands in ending malnutrition.
Speaking in Wajir Town during an advocacy meeting on nutrition financing, the First Lady said that malnutrition is a major challenge that threatens the achievement of Vision 2030, Sustainable Development Goals, World Health Assembly targets, Big 4 Agenda and overall developmental agenda of the county.
“It is unacceptable to continue having our communities and especially our children and mothers malnourished. As we strive to end malnutrition in our county, let us join hands to take up our role. We all have a part to play,” she said.
Factors highly linked to malnutrition include poor infant and young child feeding practices, poor diet, lack of access to safe water and poor hygiene.
Others include poor toilet coverage and widespread practice of open defecation, predisposing the children and population to high levels of pathogens in the environment.
Omar said that regardless of the milestones made by the county including employing nutritionists, malnutrition is still prevalent.
Deputy Governor Ahmed Mukhtar said the county is in the forefront in addressing the challenges of malnutrition through Department of Health and other departments.
“As we move forward, we must seize every opportunity to invest in nutrition as it is a critical component of development. Better nutrition is related to improved infant, child and maternal health, stronger immune systems, safer pregnancy and childbirth and lower risk of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease which is of great concern to the county,” said Mukhtar.
The deputy governor said he will advocate and lobby for increment in allocation of nutrition budget, Establishment of multi-sectoral coordination and actions for improved nutrition and Scale-up of community led total sanitation for improved toilet coverage and use.
According to nutrition capacity assessment, 2019, the number of nutritionists increased from four in 2013 to 56 in 2019, in the county.
According to 2019 long rains assessment, 43,810 children under-five years had acute malnutrition, making Wajir among the top five counties in Kenya with high burden of malnutrition.