FG may extend maternity leave for breastfeeding mothers to 6 months


As Nigeria joins as signatory to initiatives that protect, promote and support Infant and Young Child Feeding, IYCF, the Minister of Health, Professor Issac Adewole has disclosed that the four months maternity leave granted breastfeeding mothers would be extended to six months as a way of government’s commitment to encouraging exclusive breastfeeding in Nigeria.
Adewole made this disclosure yesterday in Abuja at the launch of the 2016 Lancet series on Breastfeeding and High-level Policy Dialogue for Promoting Breastfeeding for National Development in Nigeria.
The minister said, “Role of breastfeeding is important for us; everybody should become an advocate of exclusive breastfeeding. To give our commitment in the ministry, we set in motion example by extending maternity leave from four months to six months,” adding that “with this we will produce a generation of brilliant Nigerians.
“Adequate nutritional practices which begin with breastfeeding is the best and normal way of providing newborns, infants and young children with the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development. Virtually all mothers can breastfeed, provided they have accurate information and the support of their family, the health care system, and society at large.”
He said, “Exclusive breastfeeding is the foundation for human building. Optimal breastfeeding practices, which include timely initiation of breastfeeding within 30 minutes of delivery, exclusive breastfeeding of 0-six months with only breast milk, no other milks, solid or semi-solid foods and not even giving baby water until the sixth completed month has proven great impact to health, education, economic returns to the child, family, community and nation at large, adding that even when infant is exposed to HIV-infested, malnourished or any sick mother, baby can be exclusively breastfed with enough quality and quantity breast milk through the support of the spouse, household, community and health system, the minister said.
He enjoined Nigerians to join in protecting, …Read More

Source:: Nigerian Pilot