If things go as planned, female and male workers in public service in Oyo State may begin to enjoy six months maternity and one month paternity leave.
The leave is to attract full pay by the government.
The proposal came as a motion, raised by a member representing Ogbomosho North state constituency, Mrs Olawumi Oladejo during Tuesday plenary of the Oyo State House of Assembly.
Oladeji who described as “inadequate”, the current four months maternity leave been enjoyed by female workers, explained that the six months proposal will allow nursing mothers more time for exclusive breastfeeding of the babies.
She added that the motion is important as it will put the state on the same page with World Health Organization (WHO) advise on mothers to exclusively breastfeed for six months.
According to her, limited maternity protection policies prevented women from having time to breastfeed thereby increasing child and maternal mortality in the state.
She identified improved intelligence, productivity, healthy start to life as some of the benefits that exclusive breastfeeding offers.
The motion also mentioned the role of fathers in healthy and holistic development of children asking that new fathers should also be granted paternity leave of four weeks.
Ruling on the proposal, Speaker of the Assembly, Adebo Ogundoyin asked the House Committee on Women Affairs to meet with the state Ministries of Health and Women Affairs to look at reviewing existing laws on maternity leave in the state.