In line with its commitment to give greater attention to the plights of women and children in the country, Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) with support from MacArthur Foundation has paid an advocacy visit to the Kano State House of Assembly. The visit aimed primarily at presenting the legislature with relevant findings and recommendations from various implemented activities in Kano State since 2013, to engage relevant stakeholders such as —Legislature, Executives, Civil Society, and the Media, on issues affecting maternal and child health. The visit was part of the efforts to advocate to the State’s Legislature for appropriate action on their roles and responsibilities towards effective maternal and child health in the State.
Call for Action to Kano State House of Assembly
As reiterated by relevant stakeholders at various engagements, during the visit, CISLAC advised the legislature to consider the following:
- Increased resources and budgetary allocation to health sector; and full-fledged political commitment towards effective implementation of various charters on health care services in the State.
- Prompt domestication and implementation of the National Health Act to provide for effective maternal and child healthcare services in the State.
- Effective citizens’ participatory and inclusiveness in legal framework to drive maternal accountability in the State.
- Training and retraining programmes for the State’s legislators on their roles and responsibilities towards maternal accountability.
- Joint advocacy, monitoring, public hearings and sponsorship among various committees of Kano State House of Assembly to fast-track the domestication of National Health Act as well as joint executive-legislative working sessions to ensure effective implementation of relevant provisions in the Act to provide for workable maternal healthcare services.
- Development of common strategies and plan of action on maternal accountability across relevant committees in the Kano State House of Assembly.
Action Points by Kano State House of Assembly
During the visit, members of the State’s Legislature stated that:
- The legislature shall intensify effort towards complementing existing commitment by the State’s executive at training local volunteers on midwifery services to reduce maternal deaths;
- In collaboration with civil society groups, Free Maternal Health legislation will be prioritized to reduce cost burden for women seeking maternal healthcare services and encourage adequate attendance at healthcare facilities;
- The 8th House shall partner with CISLAC to enhance members’ capacity on maternal and child health legislation and oversight;
- The advocacy brief presented the House with clear understanding of the issues and commitments to health sector; hence, provides the House with opportunity to constructively engage and give greater attention to maternal and child health;
- CISLAC’s advocacy note will be represented to the House during plenary for exhaustive brainstorming that will trigger immediate discussion and appropriate action by members;
- CISLAC will be invited to make presentation to the House at upcoming plenary.
Auwal Ibrahim Musa (Rafsanjani)
Executive Director, CISLAC