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Breastfeeding: Kaduna state government implements six-month paid maternity leave for working mothers



The Kaduna government has commenced the implementation of six-month paid maternity leave for working mothers in the state’s civil service.

In a statement to commemorate World Breastfeeding Week, Hadiza Balarabe, deputy governor of the state, said maternity leave duration was also extended from three to six months.

The Nigerian labour act allows lactating mothers to take three months’ leave while they are entitled to at least 50 percent of their monthly wages during the period.

But stakeholders over the years, have been advocating for an extension to six-month paid maternity leave to support nursing mothers in achieving optimal breastfeeding.

In 2018, we reported that the federal government increased maternity leave for women from 12 to 16 weeks.

World Breastfeeding Week is marked annually from August 1st to 7th to address issues of poor early breast milk initiation and exclusive practices.

Balarabe said the 2021 multiple indicator cluster survey (MICS) showed only 41.1 percent of children are exclusively breastfed in Kaduna.

She said optimal breastfeeding has enormous health benefits but is often hindered by workplace challenges for nursing mothers.

“Achievements so far recorded in support of nutrition interventions include pronouncement and implementation of a six-month paid maternity leave (extended from the earlier three months) for mothers working in the state civil service,” the statement reads.

“This has already taken effect across all ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) with the hope that all others even in the private and federal sectors in the state will follow suit.

“I also have reports of a few MDAs in Kaduna that are yet to align to this six months maternity leave policy. This is not acceptable and will be dealt with soon enough.

“Establishment of creches across MDAs (ministry of human services and social development as well as the planning and budget commission) to support lactating mothers to continue breastfeeding their infants, even after the maternity leave and they resume work.

“This will lead to increased productivity of the working-class mother. The state has also commenced plans on how to expand the creation of these creches across other MDAs.

“The state government has established nutrition corners across 23 LGAs to provide nutrition counselling and practical demonstrations on how to adequately prepare food and feed infants aged six to 59 months.”

The deputy governor called on stakeholders at all levels, including public health experts and managers to provide a safe workplace environment for lactating mothers.

“It is imperative for government at all levels to focus on ensuring pregnant women and caregivers of children less than two years of age benefit from social protection measures to support appropriate, respectful, and safe maternity services and recommended infant and young child feeding practices in Nigeria,” she added.


Gunmen abducts CAC members travelling for burial in Ondo




Some members of the Christ Apostolic Church (CAC) in Oke Igan, Akure, Ondo state capital have been abducted.

The Ondo police command confirmed the abduction on Saturday.

The church members were reportedly travelling for a burial ceremony when they were attacked and abducted by gunmen at Ifon in Ose LGA of the state.

Olufunmilayo Odunlami-Omisanya, police spokesperson in the state, said the victims were kidnapped on Friday afternoon.

“Yesterday afternoon, the police was informed that a church bus with the inscription CAC was abandoned around Elegbeka area and there are suspicions that the passengers in the vehicle were kidnapped,” Odunlami-Omisanya said.

“The police anti-kidnapping squad and other tactical teams have been deployed to the area to rescue the victims and arrest all involved in the crime.”

A family member of one of the abductees, who did not want to be named, said the victims are members of the church’s choir.

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Lagos state government announces closure of Ojuelegba Flyover Bridge for repair of truck barrier




The Lagos State Government has announced traffic diversion at Ojuelegba flyover bridge on the night of Monday, October 2, 2023, from 10pm to 6am.

This is in line with plans by the state government to repair the truck barrier at the bridge which was recently damaged again.

This is contained in a statement issued by the state government on Friday, September 29, 2023, and can be seen on its official X (formerly Twitter) account.

The state government in the statement said that the following alternative routes will be available to Motorists during the diversion:

Motorists from Eko Bridge/Constain/Iponri inbound Ojuelegba/Alhaji Masha Road will be diverted to the service lane from Alaka via the National Stadium gate to link Barracks or Alhaji Masha Road to continue their journeys.
Motorists from Eko Bridge via Costain and those from Apapa Road going through Iponri will make use of Iponri Estate Road to link Bode Thomas via Adeniran Ogunsanya to Shitta Roundabout for their desired destinations.
Motorists were implored to be patient as the brief closure of the bridge is planned for night time as part of a traffic management strategy to avert further accidents and loss of lives.

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Mohbad: Witnesses to appear October 13 as coroner begins sitting




The coroner’s inquest into the death of the singer Mohbad began sitting in Lagos on Friday.

Mohbad, 27, died on September 12 and was buried the next day.

The circumstances surrounding his death have sparked controversies on social media.

Thousands of Nigerians have demanded justice for Mohbad in nationwide protests.

On September 18, the Lagos police inaugurated a 13-man special investigation team to probe Mohbad’s death.

On Tuesday, the Lagos state judiciary said it will begin a coroner’s inquest into Mohbad’s death following a request submitted by Falana & Falana Chambers.

The first sitting was held on Friday at the Candide Johnson court in Ikorodu, Lagos.

Representatives of the parties in the case had a close-door session to determine different matters.

Funmi Falana, a lawyer representing Mohbad’s family, told BBC that the sitting was to determine the persons of interest to be invited to the court.

She said people should be hopeful as the lawyers will pursue the cause of justice.

“What we did today was to determine the how and what procedures to follow to help us get justice. We have fixed the next date and we will bring in our witnesses,” she said.

“We are representing the interest of justice, we should allow peace to reign but justice must be served. We will get to the root cause of the death”.

Festus Ogun, a Lagos-based lawyer, said any witness who fails to appear in court will be charged with contempt of court.

The court thereafter fixed October 13 for witnesses to present their pieces of evidence in court.

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Bodex F. Hungbo, SPMIIM is a multiple award-winning Nigerian Digital Media Practitioner, Digital Strategist, PR consultant, Brand and Event Expert, Tv Presenter, Tier-A Blogger/Influencer, and a top cobbler in Nigeria.

She has widespread experiences across different professions and skills, which includes experiences in; Marketing, Media, Broadcasting, Brand and Event Management, Administration and Management with prior stints at MTN, NAPIMS-NNPC, GLOBAL FLEET OIL AND GAS, LTV, Silverbird and a host of others

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