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The recently concluded Global Nutrition Summit 2017, held in Milan, Italy, convened governments, international agencies, foundations, civil society organisations and businesses to accelerate the global response to malnutrition, an underlying cause of nearly half of all global child deaths.

A major highlight of the Summit was the pledge by the Aliko Dangote Foundation to invest US$100 Million over five years to tackle malnutrition in the worst-affected parts of Nigeria. The Aliko Dangote Foundation is the philanthropic organization of Aliko Dangote, founder and Executive Chairman of the Dangote Group, Africa’s largest homegrown conglomerate.

The Global Nutrition Summit is the global forum of the United Nations Decade of Action on Nutrition (2016-2026).  This year’s edition was held in close partnership with a number of international stakeholders including the U.K.’s Department for International Development, the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the International Coalition on Advocacy for Nutrition. The governments of Ethiopia, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Zambia all made commitments to expand their nutrition programmes and the Summit succeeded in galvanizing US3.4 billion according to the organisers.

Malnutrition affects every country in the world in various forms, however Africa is particularly hard hit and Nigeria is home to the highest numbers of malnourished children. Almost half of the one million children who die before the age of five every year in Nigeria, die of malnutrition as the underlying cause. Without the proper nutrients during the first 1,000 days of life starting from conception up to their second birthday, children are less likely to survive childhood diseases such as malaria and pneumonia, and are less likely to escape poverty as adults. They become physically and cognitively stunted, a fate that has befallen 11 million of Nigeria’s children under five.

The Aliko Dangote Foundation’s Managing Director and CEO Zouera Youssoufou said: “Nigeria’s high malnutrition rate is undermining progress towards improving child health and survival and putting the brakes on economic development.  By investing in nutrition, we aim to directly improve the lives of Nigerian families and to empower our citizens to reach their full potential.”

The Global Nutrition Report 2017, launched at the Summit, showed that, in spite of progress, 155 million children globally are still stunted and the world is off track on meeting internationally agreed nutrition targets. Financing to tackle malnutrition has been alarmingly low. Donors spend about 0.5 percent of overseas aid on nutrition, and countries allocate between one and two percent of their health budgets to the issue.

“The global malnutrition crisis endangers the physical and mental wellbeing of present and future generations” said Kofi Annan, speaking at the summit in his capacity as Chair of the Kofi Annan Foundation. “Progress in tackling both undernutrition and obesity is possible with targeted commitments, like those made here today. We need further urgent investments so that people, communities and nations can reach their full potential.”

Through his Foundation, since 1993, Aliko Dangote has made significant social investments in health, education, economic empowerment and disaster relief.

He is now becoming the strongest voice for nutritional leadership nationally and on the continent of Africa.

By making this unprecedented US$100 Million commitment, the Aliko Dangote Foundation is on a mission to reduce the prevalence of undernutrition by 60 percent in the most needy areas of Nigeria, specifically the North East and North West, where malnutrition has affected millions of lives and crippled the local economy.

NEWS

N65,000 Minimum Wage: Labour Begins Nationwide Strike Thursday

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The organised labour has served to warn of an imminent nationwide strike which will kick off on Thursday over Federal Government delay in the implementation of a new National Minimum Wage.

Mr Joe Ajaero, President, United Labour Congress (ULC) gave the warning in a communique issued after its meeting on Monday in Lagos.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the organised labour, made up of the NLC, TUC and ULC had on Sept. 12 issued a 14-day ultimatum to the government to state an amount to enable the minimum wage committee to conclude its sitting.

Labour had collectively demanded for N65,000 per month as the new National Minimum wage for all Nigerian workers as harmonised by organised Labour.

Ajaero said that if the government failed to meet their demand on the expiration of the ultimatum, it would collaborate with other labour centres and Civil Society Organisations to embark on a nation-wide strike.

”We shall no longer be obliged by this time to give any further notice to the government before embarking on the action.

”By this communiqué, we order all our affiliates and state councils nation-wide to move to the final level of alert in their preparation for the proposed nationwide strike,” he said.

The labour leader said that a new national minimum wage was desirable and possible, adding that lack of patriotism, greed and corruption was the bane of a reasonable wage.

Meanwhile, the Central Working Committee (CWC) of the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) has empowered the National Administrative Council (NAC) and its leadership to carry out all necessary actions in conjunction with other stakeholders to ensure the achievement of the minimum wage. (NAN)

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NEWS

FRSC Screens 300,000 Applicants For 4,000 Jobs

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About 324,000 job applicants nationwide have commenced screening exercise for a slot of 4,000 positions in the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC).

Speaking on Monday during an assessment tour to the screening centres in Abuja, its Corps Marshal, Dr. Boboye Oyeyemi, said only 400 vacancies are made available for the officer cadre but have about 105,000 applicants were jostling for the job.

He said 3,200 vacancies were made available for Road Marshal assistants while 1000 vacancies were made available for Marshal Inspectorate cadre.

Oyeyemi said that they would go through different levels of screwing exercise ranging from credentials screening which has commenced, aptitude test to be conducted by the Joint Admissions Matriculation Board (JAMB), interview screening and drug test.

He noted some irregularities ranging from the presence of married women who were not supposed to participate in the recruitment exercise.

He also frowned at the presence of pregnant women and applicants below the height limit required for the job.

Oyeyemi appreciated the military and the Department of State Security Services (DSS) for their support in ensuring the smooth conduct of the screening exercise.

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LIFESTYLE

You Can Now Apply For A Free Retail Stall At The 2018 GTBank Fashion Weekend [DETAILS HERE]

Gbemileke Ajayi

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Do you make or sell fabulous fashion apparels and accessories? Can your fashion brand stand out at the biggest fashion event in Africa? Then, the 2018 GTBank Fashion Weekend is calling for you!

Now in its third year, the GTBank Fashion Weekend has become the premier consumer-focused event that places African fashion on the global stage and helps small businesses in the local fashion industry thrive. The first and second editions of the event, which held in November 2016 and 2017 respectively, brought together over 250,000 people to interact with some of the best minds in the global fashion space and directly patronize more than 200 indigenous small businesses in the local fashion industry.

Organized with an overall vision of Promoting Enterprise, the 2018 GTBank Fashion Weekend will provide more than 130 small businesses with free stalls to showcase and sell the finest ensemble of apparels and fashion accessories. Applications for free stalls at the event are now open and will close on Saturday, September 29, 2018.

To apply for a free Retail Space at the GTBank Fashion Weekend, kindly visit; https://fashionweekend.gtbank.com/apply

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