The federal government and other stakeholders have been advised to implement the pledge to allocate 15% of the country’s annual budget to the health sector. Chief Executive Officer, Silver Lining for the Needy Initiative (SLNI), Hauwa Abbas made the call during the 10th year anniversary commemoration of the organization.
She said that African Heads of States at a forum hosted by Nigeria in Abuja in 2001 promised to allocate 15% of their total budget to health, adding that since then the Nigerian government has not implemented the pledge.
“I believe that government’s commitment of 15% to the health sector, will make a lot of difference, and so many things will be better in the provision of health care services for Nigerians. It is also important to ensure that the 15% allocation reaches where it is needed, like Primary Health Care Centres, PHCs, training of healthcare workers, and commodities to mention a few.”
Abbas said the organisation targets 10,000 Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVCs) with HIV and their families through a PEPFAR grant and funding by the Institute of Human Virology (IHVN ) and Centre for Disease Control (CDC ). She said the organization which was founded in 2009 and with presence in over 14 states of Nigeria has contributed to policy change and advocacy in social development, healthcare and women empowerment, among others.
She said that the organization believes that living above health, economic, social and physiological limitation is the right of everyone regardless of where they lived or who they were.
“It is a rewarding feeling to see SLNI mature to 10 years . There is still much work to do; so many communities to reach and so many lives to touch. Partnerships have been crucial to our survival,” she said.