Employers of labour have been called upon to support the global campaign for exclusive breast-feeding in order to breed a healthy and productive workforce.
Children that are exclusively breast-fed for six mothers are scientifically proven to be healthier and stronger than those not.
Bolanle Ambode, wife of the Lagos State governor, who made the call at a symposium in Lagos, also charged working-class nursing mothers not to compromise on exclusive breast-feeding of their babies.
The symposium was organised by the Department of Community Health and Primary Health Care, in collaboration with Paediatrics Department of the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), lkeja, to commemorate the 2015 World Breastfeeding Week, themed: “Breastfeed and Work; Let’s Make it Work.”
While medical science has established the fact that breast milk supplies the much needed nutrients to the new born baby, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends that exclusive breast-feeding, starting within one hour after birth, until a baby is six months old, has also been documented to be the most important source of protein to a growing baby, she said.
Ambode, who was represented by Ademola Olabowale, permanent secretary, Civil Service Pensions Office, listed the benefits of breast-feeding to include boosting the immunity of the newborn baby, good mental development, as well as healthy physical growth, stressing that women could not practice exclusive breast-feeding under stringent work conditions.
“The world breastfeeding week calls for global action, whether a woman is working in the formal, non-formal or home setting. It is necessary to combine breastfeeding and work,” she said.