Jakarta (ANTARA) - Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Culture Muhadjir Effendy stated that stunting is handled through cross-sectoral efforts that involve other ministries and institutions.

"From always (being handled) through the religious side by the Religious Affairs Ministry, now it is handled through cross-sectoral (efforts) by the National Population and Family Planning Agency (BKKBN), the Health Ministry, the Home Affairs Ministry, and the Religious Affairs Ministry," he noted here Thursday.

Muhadjir remarked that every institution has its own authority, and all will complement each other in the stunting-handling efforts in Indonesia.

He cited an example that the BKKBN's work is related to educating people on the reproductive system and reproductive health.

The Health Ministry makes health-centric efforts, while the Religious Affairs Ministry improves the understanding of prospective brides and grooms during the pre-marriage guidance process.

"Then, the other aspects, for example, are ensuring that young women should not experience chronic anemia because it threatens women's reproductive health," he remarked.

Muhadjir expressed optimism that cross-sectoral handling efforts would be able to reduce stunting prevalence to 14 percent by 2024 in line with the government's target.

Indonesia's stunting prevalence in 2022 declined by 2.8 percentage points to 21.6 percent, from 24.4 percent in 2021, based on the 2022 Indonesian Nutritional Status Survey (SSGI).

Based on his visit to several regions, Effendy found that several regions had recorded an up to 10-percent decrease in the stunting rate. However, he did not elaborate on the figure in detail.

The minister affirmed that the government will conduct a survey on stunting in October. In addition, he said, the government will improve the availability of various types of facilities in order to reduce and prevent stunting.

"Thus, if later, there are several regions that are still high (in terms of the stunting prevalence), they will be able to be compared in an aggregate manner, nationally. Hopefully, the target, like that has been set by the president, can be achieved," he stated.

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Translator: Asep Firmansyah, Raka Adji
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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