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UNGA: Toyin Saraki makes case for midwives, frontline health workers

The founder of wellbeing Africa foundation, Toyin Saraki has called on Governments and global institutions to provide better respect, recognition, regulation, remuneration and safety for midwives, frontline health workers
Toyin Saraki, speaking at the United Nations General Assembly this week said that midwives lead the way in ensuring that mothers and their newborns survive childbirth and thrive.
She said “I must call the world’s attention to the persistent deadly challenge of unacceptable dangers of attacks on midwives and health workers, while they give of themselves to help the world’s most vulnerable citizens, in the most fragile conditions.”
Saraki who is a Global Goodwill Ambassador for the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) said “Midwives and health workers should not be a target.”
She spoke about the 25-year-old midwife Saifura Hussaini Ahmed Khorsa who was kidnapped by militants alongside two other International Committee of the Red Cross aid workers.
Saifura, a young mother, had moved to Rann in north-eastern Nigeria to selflessly help those in need, as such her murder “is a tragedy for Nigeria and for the global community of midwives” Saraki explains.
She further stated that “Saifura had specifically been working in a facility for Internally Displaced Persons – where women are of course particularly vulnerable. Two days after the terrible news broke, our MamaCare midwife Rita was herself conducting an antenatal class in an IDP camp, albeit in an area with a quite different security situation.”
Advocating for midwives and health workers she said “There can be no greater reminder of the need to support ICM’s advocacy and aims to ensure that it’s over 500,000 midwife-members and 132 national Midwifery associations in 113 countries and 6 global regions, including Nigeria, are better recognised, regulated, respected and remunerated, than the news last week and highlight the work carried out by midwives like Saifura and Rita, with no fanfare, day after day, in some of the most challenging conditions imaginable.”

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