The Nigerian government has announced the inauguration of an ad-hoc Technical Advisory Group to support the implementation of the 5-year National Multi-Sectoral Plan of Action on Nutrition (NMPAN). The announcement which was disclosed in a statement by Laolu Akande noted that Vice President Yemi Osinbajo formed the group earlier in the week after consulting with the National Committee on Food and Nutrition via a virtual meeting.
Membership of the Technical Advisory Group were drawn from the Office of the VP, Nigeria Governors Forum, Nutrition Society of Nigeria, Nutrition Partners Forum, Organised Private sector, Academia/ Research, Scaling Up Nutrition Secretariat at the Federal Ministry of Health, Civil Society groups, and the UN-Nutrition.
According to the Vice President, the advisory group “will provide high-level strategic advice and support to the Secretariat of the National Council on Nutrition on the National Policy on Food and Nutrition vision and strategy, thereby facilitating nutrition positioning and comparative advantage to enable maximum impact.“
The mandate of the committee includes provision of technical assistance to the NCN and Secretariat; facilitation of inter and intra-agency coordination, supervision and monitoring, and implementation of the NMPAN.
Osinbajo noted that the assignment would be executed by “developing a synthesised work plan for National Multi-sectoral Plan of Action on Nutrition; identifying and documenting the roles of each sector and MDA, as well as the relationship(s) between these roles and the achievement of nutrition outcomes, based on the NMPAN.”
The group will work with the newly constituted National Committee on Food and Nutrition to define and train the secretariat on the capacity needs for the development and implementation of nutrition programs and projects as defined by the NMPAN.
Speaking on the essence of the committee, Osibanjo stated:
“We need more than ever to think holistically if we are to solve the issues of malnutrition. In my opinion we have embarked on a new era, where collaboration and active engagement of stakeholders to assist with implementing the NMPAN is embedded in our agenda and should propel us forward.”