As the global community marks World Population Day, experts in the health sector have identified family planning as a measure to address over population and other related issues. They made this known in an interview with Radio Nigeria in Enugu.
Celebration of World Population Day which commenced on July eleventh 1987 after a proclamation made by World leaders in 1968 provides individuals the basic human right to determine freely and responsibly the number and timing of their children. With development and other socio-economic crisis associated with rapid population growth, some experts insist that family planning remains a better option to forestall population explosion.
The Family planning Coordinator, Ministry of Health, Enugu State, Mrs. Maureen Nwankwo explains that family planning, if practiced effectively, will help to eradicate poverty, enhance maternal health and respect for human rights “When a couple decides to have number of children they want and when they want them, they will be able to give the family better feeding and education. When couples are able to cater for the family, the woman will be able to access health care service. Most time women die as a result of health related problems.
“As regards to human rights, a woman should be allowed to choose the method or choice of family planning.”
Mrs. Nwankwo notes that the National Target by 2018 on Family Planning record is thirty-six percent.
Meanwhile, the 2015 National Nutritional Health Survey indicates that only about eighteen percent of persons in Enugu State accesses modern family planning methods through the contraceptive prevalence
A Clinical Psychologist, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Ituku Ozalla, Professor Peter Ebigbo, observes that getting parents to agree on family planning is a major factor hindering the practice.
“Sometimes the woman doesn’t want again but the man wants to have more children or vice versa. Some religious challenges, very strong ones; some families do not support condoms or any form of termination of pregnancies.”
Two parents bare their minds on the issue.
“Is not enough that you should enlarge your family; as you enlarge, look at your economy, so you need to give birth to the number of children you can cater for.”
“The man should present his view before the woman or the women should present her view to the man. Let them not allow external pressure to be on them to either get more.”
The Health experts call on the government to increase the number of trained manpower to enable family planning initiative attain the thirty-six percent national target by twenty-eighteen.