Zambia achieves 2 MDGs

UNITED Nations (UN) country coordinator Janet Rogan says Zambia has so far achieved two Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) out of the eight.
Ms Rogan said in an interview that Zambia has managed to achieve MDGs number two – achieving universal primary education – and number six, which is on reduction of HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases.
“Zambia has achieved MDG two on universal primary education with net primary enrolment increasing significantly from 80 percent in 1990 to 103 percent in 2013.
“HIV prevalence has dropped to 14.3 percent against the set target of 15.6 percent by 2015,” Ms Rogan said.
She said learners reaching grade seven have increased in the country from 64 percent to 90 percent and literacy rates between the ages of 15 and 24 years have progressively increased from 75 percent to 89 percent.
Ms Rogan, however, said as school children progress to secondary school the challenges faced include high drop-out rates among girls, overcrowded classrooms and lack of text books and learning materials among others.
Ms Rogan said though Zambia has recorded some progress on MDG number one on poverty reduction, the reduction rate is slow adding that extreme poverty reduced from 58 percent in 1990 to 42.3 percent against a 2015 target of 29 percent.
She said on goal number three, the country is on track to achieve gender parity in primary education. Ratio of girls to boys at primary education has increased from 0.90 percent in 1990 to 0.99 percent in 2010.
Ms Rogan said although there is a reduction of 30 percent on child mortality, the country’s current reduction of child mortality is insufficient to meet the MDG target.
She said maternal mortality rate and ratio remain very high and the country needs a strong investment plan to achieve the MDG target.
Ms Rogan said the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) proposes to reduce the global maternal mortality ratio to less than 70 per 100,000 live births by 2030.
She said there is need for government and its partners to scale up long-term methods of family planning, expand and sustain comprehensive emergency obstetric care as well as sensitise pregnant women and their partners on the need to seek antenatal care.

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