One of the researches published by the academics in 2019 indicates that the Kwara State is the only state in the North-Central region that has met the neonatal mortality rates target. According to the research, “some states are close to or have met both neonatal mortality rate (NMR) and under-five mortality rates (U5MR) targets, while others are projected to meet the targets as late as 2088 (58 years delayed). Between 850,000 and 1.89 million neonatal deaths could be averted between 2018 and 2030, while 3.1 million to 5.96 million under-five deaths could be averted over the same period.”
With this outcome, we sought the views of Nurah Jimoh, a legal practitioner and Head of Programmes on Sustainable Development Goals at the Brain Builders International, a non-governmental organisation propagating localisation of SDGs across communities in Nigeria.
“I must commend the efforts of the present political Government towards the attainment of the Goals, especially Goal 5 (gender equality). The current Governor of the state has 52.25% of his cabinet being women, several agencies are as well headed by women. This is a laudable effort, and there is no state closer to that yet in Nigeria, even in Africa. So, in Kwara State, I can state that the level of attainment of Goal 5 is impressive.
Moving to other Goals, the state is trying, although we are not there yet. I said the state is trying because of allocations directed towards health, education and efforts put in place by the government of the day to tackle poverty is reasonable. However, these efforts will be futile without a proper monitoring system and follow ups. This is one area I feel the state is not trying enough. So, in all, Kwara State is trying towards achieving the Goals, but it is not still enough to make agenda 2030 a reality.”
Exhibit 1: Kwara Performance in NMR