Declaration of People's Health Movement Benin during the World pneumonia and diabetes days

20 Nov 2013

(12 and 14 November 2013)

Benin, celebrates this week World Days of pneumonia and diabetes. Both diseases like most non-communicable diseases (NCDs) have some common avoidable risk factors including smoking, poor diet, alcohol and lack of exercise.
The nine (9) million Beninese that we are, we are nine (9) million potential diabetics! We are all exposed. It is not a question of age: a study shows that more than nine (9) million of NCD-related deaths occurred before age 60.
In those days PHM Benin invites governants to implement the of the WHO 2013-2020 Action Plan on NCDs.

We invite the United Nations (UN), Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), the government, vendors, the populations in general and especially young people to promote healthy foods that do not abuse either of fat or sweet. For many diseases, the pharmacy is at fruits and vegetables markets! We therefore urge the Government to consider these aspects in food policies and strategies for adapting to climate change. For example, the initiative Nine million people, nine million trees would recommend Nine million fruit trees, so as to promote fruit consumption!

We urge the government to introduce a nutrition course in our schools and colleges curricula: dozens of professional nutritionists are trained for several years at the University of Abomey Calavi. This is an opportunity. Meanwhile, we invite governants, the UN and civil society organizations to support the development and distribution of a food guide as proposed by Pole DFN.

Apart from the quality of food sold in street corners or prepared at home, Benin chapter of People’s Health Movement catches authorities’ attention on the storming of public spaces and sports fields by traders. These places help many people to meet their needs and earn their daily pittance but could help increase physical activities and sports.

Moreover, PHM Benin welcomes the implementation of the mandatory health insurance (RAMU) which should allow better access of marginalized groups to health services including NCD-related information. Anyway, the RAMU could be non-smoking by allowing preferential rates to non-smokers.

We invite CSOs, the UN, academia to support research for a better measure and surveillance of non-communicable diseases.

Benin Head of State created, in his last cabinet a Ministry of the Millennium Development Goals and sustainable development goals. Respect! But let us not forget that the post -2015 success is to be prepared now. We therefore look forward to concrete actions that would mark a new chapter in the implementation of the human rights based approach for programming in Benin.

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