Mon. Jul 22nd, 2024

International NGO To Ensure 1 in 4 Women Access Contraceptive Services

By Justina Auta

Marie Stopes International Organisation in Nigeria (MSION), an NGO, has rebranded to MSI Nigeria Reproductive Choices (MSIN) to facilitate reproductive choices by ensuring one in four women access contraceptive services by 2030.

The organisation’s Country Director, Mr Emmanuel Ajah, made this known on the sideline of the rebranding event in Abuja.

Ajah said that rebranding of the organisation would bridge gaps in family planning services and enable individuals to make choices on their Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (SRH) rights services.

He added that “we offer Nigerian women contraceptives without discrimination or being judgmental based on age, location, background, marital or economic status.

“Our vision is to achieve a birth where everyone is wanted and our mission is to ensure that having children is by choice and not by chance.”

He explained that in 2022, MSIN contributed over 30 per cent of family planning services and supported 3.3 million clients with various SRH services.

He said that the efforts translated to the prevention of 3.1 million unintended pregnancies while saving the lives of 17,050 women from maternal mortality.

The country director said “by 2030, it is estimated that 22 million women and girls will have demand for Family Planning services.

“The core of our strategic vision is to ensure that one in four women will have their contraceptive needs met and achieved through direct MSI Nigeria services or through MSI Nigeria- supported service providers operating seamlessly within both the public and private sectors.

“ This is why we have also added choices to our name. This will reflect our client-centered belief to empower woman to take control of their lives, and on their terms by providing a bouquet of family planning options.”

Prof. Oladapo Shittu, an Obstetrician and Gynecologist, said access to contraceptive services will reduce unplanned pregnancies, unsafe abortions and maternal mortality in the country.

Shittu, who is also a board member, MSIN, and Provost, College of Medicine, Federal University of Health Sciences Otukpo in Benue, urged government to channel
funds toward ensuring access to SRH services.

He said “women who have unintended pregnancies for no fault of theirs as a result of assault are most times left on their own.

“At the international level, Nigeria has the highest burden of maternal mortality and we are supposed to reduce that by 2030, just seven years from now.

“We need to rethink and hope that the new administration will save unnecessary death of women because contraception has been shown worldwide as capable of saving and preventing 30 per cent of maternal deaths.’’

Also, Dr Tinuola Akinbolagbe, the Board Chairman of MSIN, said “having the title of being the largest country with high maternal mortality in the world is not something that we as a nation are proud of.

“So, we must turn the tide on those numbers and statistics and ensure every woman, regardless of age, socio-economic status, location is given reproductive choices.’’ (NAN)

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