Enhancing Nigeria’s response to HIV and AIDS

Nigeria has been hard hit by the HIV and AIDS epidemic, with an estimated adult HIV prevalence of around 4.4%, based on sentinel surveillance data. An estimated 3.9 million Nigerians are living with the HIV virus. UNAIDS classifies the epidemic in Nigeria as generalised and estimates that 220,000 children under the age of 15 are living with HIV. Nigeria’s National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) estimates that 1.3 million children have been orphaned by the disease.

The Enhancing Nigeria’s Response to HIV and AIDS (ENR), 2008–2014, is a programme of support to the Government of Nigeria to reverse the HIV epidemic and mitigate equitably the impact of AIDS on individuals, households and the wider economy. Options led the programme objective of strengthening the stewardship and coordination role of federal and state governments for an effective, multi-sectoral and evidence-based HIV and AIDS response. The approach is to link the programme and its goals to other DFID programmes and the many health and development initiatives taking place in Nigeria. ENR was just one piece of larger efforts to strengthen governance, civil society and specific sectors such as health and education.

Using the Organizational Capacity Assessment (OCA) Tool that Options designed in cooperation with the National Agency for HIV/AIDS (NACA) in Nigeria, average scores of all institutions in all eight states was 52% (baseline) and increased to 76% by the end of the programme (result). HIV and AIDS State Unified Operational Plans (SUOPs), activity and financial reports, are now produced annually by seven States in Nigeria.

Options contributed to the overall programme by strengthening:

  • National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA), and State Agencies for the Control of AIDS (SACA) systems and capacity in planning and budgeting
  • Government capacity to plan and budget for HIV/AIDS
  • Capacity of NACA and selected SACAs in advocacy to reduce stigma and discrimination and increase meaningful involvement of PLWHA
  • Evidence-based planning, programme tracking, and expenditure tracking to enhance the stewardship role of NACAs and SACAs and
  • National and State AIDS and STDs Control Programmes and coordination between MoH and SMoH – NACA and SACAs


Organisational capacity across the 8 states increased from 52% at baseline to 76% by the end of the programme

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