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PIA Press Release

Nutrition body seeks LGU support for 10-year program

By Rose B. Palacio

Davao City (14 October) -- National Nutrition Council regional head Ma. Teresa Ungson and Davao City Nutrition chief Venus Millana urged private sector and local government units concerned to support the 10-year nutrition program of the Administration.

Ms. Ungson said “everyone of us should share our part in saving over six million children from hunger and malnutrition by throwing help and full support behind a 10-year Malacañang initiative to attain nutritional sufficiency for all Filipinos.

Ms. Millana, on the other hand said that “while malnutrition is a national issue and should be addressed by the national government governors, mayors and other local government officials. The program is part of the Inter-agency Local Nutrition committees which are supposed to assess nutrition issues in their respective localities.

Gracing the ARENA XI radio forum over DXRP Radyo ng Bayan anchored by Josette Olivera and the Philippine Information Agency. Ms. Ungson said the government’s medium-term action plan to address widespread malnutrition is nationwide in scope. But its implementation rests on the local nutrition committee inter-agencies that were put in place in provinces, cities, municipalities and barangay levels.

These committees are chaired by the local chief executives who are responsible in assessing the situation as well as the planning, funding, implementing, monitoring and evaluating their local nutrition action plans.

Studies conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology showed that an estimated 3.67 million children of pre-school age are underweight.

The FNRI studies revealed that 3.76-million are short for their age, 756,000 are thin and 120,000 are overweight for their age based on the 2001 population of 12 million children up to five years old.

The studies also reported that among 9.31-million schoolchildren, an estimated 3.06-million are underweight, 3.82-million are short and 75,000 are overweight for their age.

This action plan to fight malnutrition was approved by President Arroyo with its financial requirements amounting to P80-billion for 2006 to 2010.

The Medium Term Philippine Plan of Action for Nutrition was formulated by the National Nutrition Council, with its government board chaired by the Department of Health and co-chaired by the DILG and the Department of Agriculture, is the country’s road map to achieve nutritional adequacy for all Filipinos. (PIA-XI) [top]

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