The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) Tuesday inaugurated a multi-sectoral technical committee on the enforcement of International Code for Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes (BMS) and some health workers in Yobe state.
The committee was inaugurated during a three-day capacity building training for its members at the NAFDAC office in Damaturu, the Yobe state capital.
In her welcome address, the Director, Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (NAFDAC), Mrs Eva O. Edwards, said the BMS code is a set of global recommendations by WHO/UNICEF to member countries to adopt in order to promote, protect and support breastfeeding.
Represented by state coordinator of NAFDAC, Alhaji Lawan Musa Dadingelma, Mrs Edwards said the BMS code was enacted for effective implementation of the provisions of the regulations.
Also, part of the strategies for implementation is the development of a 5-year strategic plan for the implementation of the BMS Code.
She noted that one of the recommendations of the plan is the establishment of the States multi-sectoral technical committee that would oversee the implementation, enforcement and advocacy at the state level.
In her remarks, BMS Desk Officer, Rahila Maishanu said the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes, adopted by the World Health Assembly in May 1981,is a tool to protect, support and promote optimal breastfeeding.
She stated that the code aims at ensuring safe feeding and better nutrition for babies and protecting breastfeeding mothers from aggressive marketing of baby foods.
Maishanu explained that members of the committee comprised technical officers from relevant ministries, departments and agencies, development partners, civil society organisations, academia, professional bodies and the media.
She stressed the need for governments at all levels to monitor adherence to the code and the national regulations and sanction violators for effective breastfeeding.