Makurdi — The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has said that at least 240,000 Nigerian children die every year from diarrhoea related illness, one of the commonest childhood killer diseases.
The Office Director of USAID Nigeria, Nancy Lowenthal, said the disturbing figure of children dying from diarrhoea ranked the country as the second highest in the world.
Lowenthal who also noted that diarrhoea, pneumonia and malaria were the leading causes of childhood killer diseases, stressed the need for partners and stakeholders to join hands together in order to end all forms of preventable child and maternal morbidity.
She spoke at the launch campaign against diarrhoea organised by the Sustaining Health Outcomes in the Private Sector Plus (SHOPS PLUS) in conjunction with USAID in Makurdi.
Chief of Party, SHOPS Plus Nigeria, Mrs Ayodele Iroko, in her address said her organisation, which is a flagship project of USAID, aimed to increase the use of priority health services through the strategic expansion of private sector whole health system.
Iroko posited that the “Push Diarrhoea Away” campaign would foster zero tolerance for diarrhoea deaths in children under the age of five in all communities in Benue State while also helping the kids to complete their immunisation.
Highlights of the occasion, which was attended by wife of the state governor, Mrs. Eunice Ortom, included the recognition of 722 community volunteers trained as Zinc/ORS volunteers and the designation of wives of LG administrators as advocates who would pass the message to households in all 23 local government areas of the state.