Bayelsa govt engages Church leaders on safe motherhood — Nigerian Pilot News
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Bayelsa govt engages Church leaders on safe motherhood

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Bayelsa govt engages Church leaders on safe motherhood

Bayelsa State government on Tuesday has charged Church leaders to enlighten their congregations about its safe motherhood campaign, which aimed at reducing the rate of maternal and infant mortality death during child birth.

Speaking at a sensitization workshop with Christian leaders, at, Government house, Yenagoa, the state Deputy Governor, Rear Admiral Gboribiogha John-Jonah (rtd), said the project is set out to ensure no woman or infant die during delivery.

John- Jonah said that the state government has built courtage hospitals in all 105 wards and referral hospitals in all the constituencies across the state, this he added is to ensure success of the safe motherhood initiative..

He said: “I don’t know any community of persons that can reach every community in Bayelsa State than the Christian community, because every community has a church.”

Over time, people have been in the habit of politicizing genuine government policies for reasons they have not been able to explain. Because this project is dear to us and we don’t want anybody to politicize it, we decided to take it to churches, he said.

He disclosed that the reason why government engage religious leaders is to ensure that the congregations are well educated on the issue of safe delivery, so that the danger of infant and maternal mortality could be averted in the state.

The commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Iworiso Markson, said because that the high statistics of maternal and infant death in rural communities across state government expects churches to preach the safe motherhood initiative like the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Markson said, “We have already built health centers across the state. Therefore, so all the churches can do now is to encourage our pregnant women to register with hospitals close to them, we have done the greatest good.’’

“The initiative is designed in such a way that every pregnant woman that registers for the program would receive N3000 monthly allowance and her hospital bills during and after delivery would be fully paid by the State Government.”

We want the Christian leaders and pastors to encourage their members, when there are sick especially those pregnant mothers, there’s need for them to be checked as they go to the hospitals.”

“The message to our Christian leaders is to encourage their members to use that facilities provided by the government, for our pregnant women to be catered for.

“The government is to provide for pregnant women from day one to when they put to birth, and even after birth.

We want to believe that through this sensitization the message will get to everybody in Bayelsa state.”

A consultant obstetrician with the Federal Medical Center, Dr. Andrew Igbefa, admonished church leaders to desist from encouraging women suffering from complications during and after delivery to go to church for prayers, instead of referring them to the nearest hospital.

Igbefa noted that the common causes of maternal death to include bleeding during pregnancy, labour and delivery, hypertension, obstructed labour, sepsis and unsafe abortion, adding that death arising from such conditions that can be prevented if pregnant women are given the right education.

The Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN Chairman Arch. Bishop Jacob Akpiri commended the initiative and said, “It’s a very good initiative and it’s the first of its kind that has partnered with the church.

“We want our wives and our daughters to be in good health and have a safe delivery so this is a good initiative, he emphasised.

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