Every Nigerian Deserves Accessible Quality Healthcare Services – NRHJN
… Marks 10th Anniversary
The Network of Reproductive Health Journalists of Nigeria, NRHJN, has called on those in leadership positions to ensure that every Nigerian has easy access to quality healthcare delivery services.
In a release signed by Roland Ogbonnaya and Yinka Shokunbi, President and National Secretary respectively, NRHJN reiterated the fact that every Nigerian as recognised by our Constitution, regardless of ethnicity, religious inclination, sex or social background, deserves right to social inclusion, good healthcare (includig right to choice and a say in reproductive health & services) quality education and economic empowerment.
“Amidst the world global pandemics of wars, natural disasters, banditry & nuclear disasters as, 60years of our nationhood is no small achievement. Nigeria however, is battling with myriads of challenges that have made her citizens wonder if celebrating the Diamond is in any way worth it.”
“The recent #EndSARS protests by young people is a pointer to the fact the country indeed has an Army of young people who can be positively engaged and harnessed for the greatness of Nigeria.”
The group revealed that the state of the nation’s healthcare, education, economy, plitical climate and every other facets of lives have remained so beaten and battered through years of neglect and ineptitude of past governments.
“The strive to achieve the 17 Agenda of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 can only become reality if everyone keys in as stakeholders and government in its part promotes conducive environment for inclusiveness.”
“With diseases such as COVID-19, Nigerians still nurse hope that our country at 60years can still be fixed for an inclusive nationhood.”
NRHJN, was founded in 2010 as a group of necessity by Ipas, Nigeria which had trained several Nigerian Journalists who have demonstrated commitment to proactively advocate for sexual reproductive health rights of Nigerians.
These Journalists are women and men influencers who are also committed defenders of maternal and child health among other reproductive health related issues.
“As the group marks 10years of actively reporting sexual and reproductive health and rights in Nigeria, it is calling on all stakeholders to ensure quality sexual and reproductive health care services among all Nigerians especially women and young girls who continue to bear the burden of Gender based violence and poor health indices amidst impact of COVID-19 pandemic.”
The 10th anniversary is being marked with Lecture titled: *”Nigeria At 60, Progress And Opportunities For Sexual And Reproductive Health And Rights Protection”* to be delivered by a very renowned Professor of Public Law, Dean Faculty of Law, University of Lagos, Prof. Ayo Atsenuwa.
The Keynote Speaker, Erelu Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi, First Lady, Ekiti State, will speak on the sub-theme: “COVID-19, A Pandemic’s Assault On Gender-Based Violence And Reproductive Health Services.”
Other speakers and panelists include: Secretary, Kano State Task Force on COVID-19, Dr. Imam Wada Bello and Executive Chairperson, VAPP Law Working Group, Bauchi State, Magistrate Amina Garuba, who will share experiences from their states.
The event which shall mostly be attended via zoom webinar on Wednesday, December 2, 2020, will be chaired by Honourable Commissioner for Health, Lagos State, Prof. Akin Abayomi with the chairman, Board of Trustees of the Network, Dr. Ejike Oji speaking on the Journey, how it all began.
*NETWORK ORGANISATIONAL BRIEF:*
The Network of Reproductive Health Journalists of Nigeria (NRHJN), is a cluster of Health Reporters, Editors and Producers with passion for reporting and working on issues related to Sexual Reproductive Health & Rights (SRHR)
Set up in April 2010 through partnership with Ipas Nigeria, principally to be the bridge between the Nigerian Society and Reproductive Health partners/ stakeholders working in Nigeria.
NRHJN was registered with the Corporate Affairs (CAC), as a Non-Governmental, Non-partisan, Not-for-profit group of Nigerian journalists.
• Comprising over 50 active members who are journalists in print, radio, TV and online media, spread across all th geo-political zones of the country
Its membership is open to male and female Nigerian journalists with passion for SRHR issues. An intending member must show evidence of commitment and passion for SRHR issues and should have been trained by Ipas or other relevant body on SRHR advocacy and allied issues
Elected Executive Committee of Officers – President, Vice President, Zonal Coordinators, National Secretary, Treasurer, Welfare Officer, Program Officer
*VISION:* To be the bridge for Reproductive Health & Rights communication in the Nigerian society.
*MISSION:* To set agenda for the creation, promotion and enhancement of developmental health journalism
*MOTTO:* Together we can make a difference
• Propagate the passion and commitment of the Nigerian media to RHR.
• Advocate for Reproductive Health & Rights issues and policies in Nigeria and globally.
• Promote developmental health, general well being and allied issues.
• To propagate the passion and commitment of the Nigerian media to reproductive health and rights especially of all women and girls regardless of their natural abilities.
• To promote developmental health issues of Nigerian citizens, general wellbeing and allied issues of all Nigerians as entrenched in the Nigerian Constitution by Rights.
• To create sensitization and awareness programmes towards reproductive health and rights in Nigeria
• To promote the ratification and domestication in Nigeria of International Charters and Conventions on Reproductive Health Rights.
• To set Agenda for the Creation, Promotion and Enhancement of Developmental Health Journalism
• To advocate for Reproductive Health Rights Issues and Policies in Nigeria and Globally.
The NRHJN has a 5-man Board of Trustees (Chairman – Dr. Ejike Oji, Dr. Hauwa Shekarau, Dr. Abiola Akinyode – Afolabi, Roland Ogbonnaya, (President) & Yinka Shokunbi (National Secretary) as well as membership of 50 committed and passionate Journalists who have been trained on issues of Reproductive Health Advocacy, spread across the country and in various media outlets-Print, Broadcast Radio/Television and Online media.
We are an open and transparent Network with partnerships linked to formidable and reliable groups with interest in Reproductive Health Agenda.
*Some Past Activities*
• Advocacy for the de-criminalisation of the Abortion Laws in the Nigerian Constitution in partnership with Ipas, Nigeria and Ipas Africa office, Kenya
• Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law (VAPP law)
• Bring Back Our Girls Campaigns
• Campaign to End Endometriosis and Rights to Fertility Treatment
• Advocacy for Availability of Family Planning Commodities to the last mile in partnership with UNFPA/Lagos State Ministry of Health, 2015
• End to Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) and other Harmful Traditional Practices (HTPs)
• Access to Breast and Cervical Cancers Prevention, Care and Treatment
• Women Deliver Conference 2016, 2018
• 4th & 5th Family planning conferences 2016 & 2018.
• Promotion of Maternal & Child Health Rights as enacted in the New Nigeria Health Policy 2017
• Adolescent leadership mentoring camp on HIV prevention/elimination in partnership with UNICEF, 2016
• Partnership with People Living With Disabilities (PWDs) on Sexual & Reproductive Health (SHR), for training and engagement
• … other reproductive health issues that affect women and girls in Nigeria as represented in various stories and activities in the media where our membership is spread nationally.
• Partnership with Marie Stopes Organisation of Nigeria, Society for Family Health, NURHI/TCI amongst others and still counting.
• During this current pandemic, the leadership of the Network commenced a new way of navigating the rough road with various online activities to sensitize Nigerians on how to ensure their reproductive health issues are taken care of in spite of covid-19.
• We initiated what we referred to #NRHJNWebinarSeries wherein series of topics are discussed via zoom inviting experts to discuss and survivors share experiences of coping with covid. The most recent webinar was the one we had on Sexual Harassment Bill which trended for a long time.
• The Network is never a dull place to be and only active engagers are members.
• One unique feature of the Network is that to become a member you must be ready to get insured against accidents and terminal sicknesses- members enjoy annual insurance coverage and we pay membership and annual dues.
• At the present, the Network is actively and strongly spread over the following states: Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Ondo, Edo, Delta, Anambra, Abia, Kano, Plateau, Bauchi, Taraba, Rivers, Nassarawa, FCT, Niger and we are still counting.