White Ribbon Alliance decries poor funding for family planning

The White Ribbon Alliance has expressed concern over poor funding for family planning commodities in the 2020/21 national budget.

Executive Director for the White Ribbon Alliance Hester Mkwinda Nyasulu said this on Friday in Lilongwe during a briefing on issues around safe motherhood, family planning and Covid-19 pandemic in Malawi.

In an interview with Malawi24, Nyasulu said the Ministry of Health proposed a budget of K250 Million but they reduced it to K176 Million, remaining with a deficit of K74 Million.

“We have engaged parliamentary committee on health, women caucus and the budgetary committee, we raised this issue up and l hope they are going to take it in Parliament to bring the budget to 250 Million”, he said.

He added that the K176 million is K10 million less than the funding that was given in the 2019/20 budget.

According to Nyasulu, government currently provides only 2 percent of the needed K9.4 billion funding for family planning while most of the funds are provided by donors.

He said there are a lot of things that need investment in family planning such as prevention of teenage pregnancies which is a huge issue in Malawi.

He went on to say that the organization is working with other non-governmental organizations to make sure women both rural and urban areas are accessing the family planning methods.

Nyasulu then said White Ribbon Alliance vision will ensure that all girls and women realise their right to quality health and well-being.

The organization was started in 2002 and its mission is to activate people-led movement for reproductive maternal and newborn health and girls.