The Bayelsa State Government has trained church leaders on how to enlighten their congregations about safe delivery campaign to reduce the rate of maternal and infant mortality during childbirth.
Speaking in Yenagoa at a sensitization workshop for Christian leaders in the state yesterday, Deputy Governor Gboribiogha John-Jonah said the government had built cottage and referral hospitals in all the 105 wards across the state.
He said: “I don’t know any community of persons that can reach every community in Bayelsa State than the Christian community, because every community has a church. Over time, people have been in the habit of politicizing genuine government policies for reasons they have not been able to explain. Because this project is dear to us and we don’t want anybody to politicize it, we decided to take it to churches.”
The Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Iworiso Markson, said the statistics of maternal and infant death in rural community across state was frightening.
He said the government expected churches to preach the safe motherhood initiative like the gospel of Jesus Christ.
He said: “We have already built health centres across the state. Therefore, so all the churches can do now is to encourage our pregnant women to register with hospitals close to them, we have done the greatest good.
He added: “The initiative is designed in such a way that every pregnant woman that registers for the program would receive N3,000 monthly allowance and her hospital bills during and after delivery would be fully paid by the state government.”