Anti-Polio Meeting Becomes Battle Ground of PML-N, PPP Egos

PML-N and PPP fights over polio virus

KARACHI – The meeting between officials of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) lead federal government and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) lead Sindh government about the elimination of polio virus has become a battle ground.

The meeting which was originally designed for making a better strategy to defeat polio virus in Pakistan became a punching bag to satisfy ego of both PML-N and PPP leaders by highlighting each other’s mistakes.

PakistanTribe learnt that during the meeting Sindh’s representatives started pointing out the mistakes of PML-N lead federal government. It irked the temper of State Minister of Health Service Saira Afzal Tarar who later tried her best to shift the blame on the other side.

After the conclusion of seemingly useless meeting, Saira told media persons “The purpose of this meeting was not to point out mistakes of federal government. It shows Sindh is not serious in the eradication of polio virus form the country.”

Commenting over the reservation of Sindh’s government, she said “Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) are not only in Sindh. They are all over Pakistan. So relating polio virus spread to IDPs is not a justification.”

Sindh provided federal government wrong polio statistics, says federal Health Minister, Saira Afzal Tarar | PakistanTribe.com
Sindh provided federal government wrong polio statistics, says federal Health Minister, Saira Afzal Tarar

However, she accepted that almost 80 per cent of polio virus cases in Pakistan are ethnic Pashtuns.

The highest 153 polio virus cases have been reported in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), followed by 48 in Khyber Pakhtunkhuwa (KP), 24 in Sindh, 10 in Balochistan and only three in Punjab. According to the country’s health indicators, every year polio cases in the country were increasing. Around 58 cases were reported in 2012, 93 in 2013 and 238 (so far) in 2014.

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