By Bose Adelaja
Nine out of every 10 Nigerian women of child-bearing age are not using modern contraceptive methods. This is one of the revelations at a stakeholders’ dissemination on the Universal Access to Female Condom programme aimed at increasing demand and access to female condoms.
Studies have shown that the country has a low contraceptive prevalence rate of 10 per cent as regards modern family method which has resulted in unplanned pregnancy and increased maternal mortality rates.
Indeed, reports have shown that the incidence of HIV in Nigeria is also relatively high among West African countries, especially among women and girls who disproportionately bear the HIV and AIDS burden.
To address the situation, stakeholders converged on Lagos to examine the challenges posed by Sexually Transmitted Diseases STDs, and unwanted pregnancies as well as proffer solutions.
According to the experts, the use of female condoms will help to minimise the occurrence of STDs, unplanned pregnancies and mortality rates in West African countries even as they urged women of childbearing age to embrace the use of female condoms to reduce the risks involved in unprotected sex.
At the Stakeholders meeting, which also marked the end of the programme dissemination aimed at increasing the demand and access to the female condom, the Project Manager, Universal Access to Female Condom, UAFC, Mrs. Victoria Archibong, said the programme was implemented in three pilot states: Edo, Delta and Lagos, with the target to increase the demand for female condom at an affordable price of N30 per pack.
Chief Operating Officer, Wale Adedeji, noted that the programme which started in August 2008 and ended in December 2011 had Society for Family Health, SFH, as the contractor of the project in Nigeria.