Jakarta (ANTARA) - Despite a decline in national stunting prevalence, remote areas still need special interventions to reduce stunting, the National Population and Family Planning Agency (BKKBN) has said.

"Special interventions related to adolescent pregnancy are needed, especially in remote areas," BKKBN head Hasto Wardoyo said in an official statement released here on Wednesday.

During a virtual roadshow for the acceleration of stunting reduction and extreme poverty eradication in South Sumatra on Tuesday (March 28, 2023), Wardoyo cited the example of four districts in South Sumatra that have high stunting prevalence.

The four districts are Muara Enim, with a stunting prevalence of 22.8 percent; Musi Rawas, 25.4 percent; Banyuasin, 24.8 percent; and Ogan Ilir, 24.9 percent.

Based on the 2022 Indonesian Nutritional Status Survey (SSGI), South Sumatra's stunting prevalence declined from 24.8 percent in 2021 to 18.6 percent in 2022.

According to Wardoyo, one of the interventions must be targeted at the causes of stunting, such as early marriage.

He pointed out that 73 women gave birth at the age of 15–19 years in North Musi Rawas district, South Sumatra.

"Several districts and cities need to make efforts to reduce early marriage. The more remote an area is, the more people get married at a young age," Wardoyo stated.

Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Culture Muhadjir Effendy said that many regions have run good innovation programs and even succeeded in involving all parties in eradicating stunting by following BKKBN's guidelines.

The eradication of stunting and extreme poverty has also been focused on targets based on ‘by name by address’ data, including activating the role of the Religious Affairs Office (KUA), as done in North Musi Rawas district.

Indonesia's stunting prevalence declined by 2.8 percentage points to 21.6 percent in 2022 from 24.4 percent in 2021, based on the 2022 SSGI. The Indonesian government is aiming to reduce stunting prevalence to 14 percent by 2024.

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Translator: Hreeloita Dharma, Raka Adji
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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