Zimbabwe Civil Society Organisations Scaling Up Nutrition Alliance (ZCSOSUNA) says it is deeply concerned that despite progress made in reducing hunger and undernourishment in the country, with nearly 1 in 4 children under the age of 5 years experiencing long episodes of poor nutrition within their first 1000 days that is from conception until they reach 2 years.
The concern raised by ZCSOSUNA National Coordinated, Kuda Zombe comes after National Nutrition Survey of 2018 key findings revealed that 26.2% of children in Zimbabwe are stunted.
“We would like to remind policy makers and key decision makers in government that everyone in the country has the right to adequate, safe, and nutritious food as articulated in the constitution of Zimbabwe,” Zombe said.
“Despite this right malnutrition in all its forms remains a public health problem in Zimbabwe and needs urgent attention if we are to eliminate it within our lifetime and we cannot afford to delay.”
Although there are challenges for childern to get nutritious food, Zimbabwe on 16 May 2013, launched a Food and Nutrition Policy to ensure nourishment security among citizens.
The country’s constitution on Article 81(1) says every child has that is to say every boy and girl under the age of eighteen years, has the right to education, health care services, nutrition and shelter.
Zimbabwe also joined the Global Scaling Up Nutrition movement in 2011 leading to the formation of country sun networks, including the civil society network, donor, UN, business and research and academia to work on nutrition.
The nation made a commitment during the 2013 London Nutrition for Growth Summit, the commitment was aimed at putting nutrition at the centre of the country’s development agenda and making good nutrition one of the top political priorities as a way of facilitating increased domestic financing for nutrition.
“It is unacceptable that 1 in every 4 children under the age of five continue to suffer from or die of preventable causes of malnutrition in all its forms,” Zombe said.
“We cannot continue to deny children the right to realise their full potential because of preventable causes, we need to ensure children realise their human right to adequate food and nutrition. The time for action is now!”