The wife of Enugu State Governor, Mrs Monica Ugwuanyi, has urged nursing mothers to breastfeed their babies adequately to avoid malnutrition, stressing the importance of breastfeeding of children.
The Governor ‘s wife, who made the call on Sunday, in her address to the people of the state to mark the 2020 World Breastfeeding Week, advised early initiation of breastfeeding of children within the first one hour of birth, exclusive breastfeeding for six months and introduction of solid food as complementary feeding and continuous breastfeeding for two years of age or beyond.
She said that children who were not well fed could have stunted growth and likely suffer from “chronic diseases – making populations vulnerable to pandemics such as the Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) currently ravaging the world.
She said that “breast milk contains antibodies that help babies fight viruses and bacteria, lowers their (babies’) risk of having asthma or allergies, provides the ideal nutrition for the babies and makes them smart.
“Babies who are exclusively breastfed for six months without a formula have fewer ear infections, respiratory illness and diarrhea”, she said.
Mrs Ugwuanyi called on mothers, fathers and wives of Local Government Chairmen to join her “in this renewed call for appropriate feeding as one pathway to mitigate environmental degradation that starts with correct breastfeeding”.
“A warm chain of support from us all will create an enabling environment that empowers all mothers to breastfeed optimally for a healthier planet. I pledge to bridge the gap for the survival of our children”, Mrs. Ugwuanyi said.