The Federal Government on Thursday inaugurated the Yellow Heart Initiative to prevent the prevailing death of mothers and their children in the country.
The Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, who inaugurated the initiative, commended the MTN Foundation, the brain behind the initiative.
Adewole, who was represented by Osarenona Uwaifo, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, called on other organisations to emulate the foundation in rendering humanitarian service to the populace.
He said that this would help the indigent class, especially those who could not access primary health facilities the opportunities to save their lives.
Nonny Ugboma, the Executive Secretary, MTN Foundation, at the unveiling of the initiative in Abuja said the foundation was deeply concerned about the death of women and child, which resulted in the initiative.
Ugboma said: “MTN believes strongly in health. I don’t know if you know we have three key areas – health, education and economic empowerment but over the years we have drawn that initiative to touch the lives of mothers and children.
“We are also deeply concerned with the indices relating to maternal and infant mortality.
“So, we thought that we should join hands with the Federal Ministry to Health and let’s use this platform to bring other agencies and other organisations to see how we can collaborate to truly extend and implement projects that will take care of maternal health and infant health.
“It is important to mention that the yellow heart for us is a symbol of love because if you are talking about nation building, you have to take care of the fundamentals which are our mothers and our children.”
She said that the initiative would be extended to six states, adding that Thursday’s inauguration was the first phase.
Ugboma said that the foundation was collaborating with other stakeholders and agencies with strong partnership with the federal ministry of health.
The Chairman, MTN Foundation, Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi, painted a sad picture of the prevailing situation of child and mother mortality in the country.
He urged Nigerians to stop complaining but rather take action that would reduce the menace.
Adelusi-Adeluyi said: “As a people, we must know that this cannot continue. We ask you to join the yellow heart campaign to improve the health and wellbeing of our mothers and our children.
“The yellow heart campaign is an urgent call to purposeful action. It is working collaboratively with public, private and non- profit parties that can improve the health and survival rate of women and children in our country.”
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the initiative which started from October 26, will run through the end of March 2018.
It will take place in Ogun, Oyo, Abia, Cross River, Niger and Kaduna States.
The initiative is a multi-stakeholders approach supported by the ministry of health to deliver a sustainable intervention to reduce the prevalence of death by providing access to quality healthcare for indigent Nigerians.