The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) said on Tuesday at least 1,115 children have died from acute malnutrition in Borno State between January and December last year.
The UNICEF Nutrition Sector Coordinator, Mr. Simon Karanja, disclosed this at the inauguration of the Borno Steering Committee on Food and Nutrition in Maiduguri, the state capital.
Karanja said 138,236 children were treated in various Community for Management of Acute Malnutrition centres in the state while 6,399 defaulted treatment during the period under review.
According to him, 1,877 children did not recover or relapsed from malnutrition.
He said that at least three cases of death were recorded everyday in the state.
The UNICEF official attributed the rising cases of malnutrition to poor dietary consumption trends, high prevalence of diseases such as diarrhea, measles, and food insecurity.
Other factors, he said, included poor funding of prevention interventions, duplication and gaps in services and critical medicine shortages for such persons.
Karanja said: “In 2020, the programme targeted 533,000 children in need of treatment.
“Also, an estimated 138,000 are expected to receive treatment for Severe Acute Malnutrition while 182 will receive treatment for Moderate Acute Malnutrition.”
Also speaking, the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) Manager for UNICEF, Mr. Kabuka Banda, blamed the rising cases of malnutrition especially in the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps to lack of “adequate utilisation of the environment.” (NAN)