PM Nawaz says immunisation right of every child, vows to eradicate polio

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said Friday that a comprehensive communication strategy was being evolved which would promote immunisation as the right of every child and also called upon every segment of the society to ensure that children were being given their due rights.

A ceremony was held at the Prime Minister House in relation to World Polio Day. On the occasion, the premier met polio-affected children and their parents.

Later, the prime minister administered polio vaccination drops to children and expressed commitment on behalf of his government towards eradicating the crippling virus. He said all resources were being made available to eradicate polio.

Prime Minister Nawaz added that the premier’s office had recently adopted a polio eradication initiative for monitoring and reviewing progress on the issue, which he termed as one of “utmost importance”.

He said a Prime Minister’s Focus Group for polio emergency had also been constituted to hold monthly meetings to assess the performance of the eradication program.

Despite efforts by the government and other stakeholders, the number of polio cases in the country have increased by four times in the year 2014 when compared to the corresponding period last year.

“As many as 217 cases of polio have been reported in the current year in Pakistan,” said Dr Zubair Mufti, a representative of the World Health Organisation (WHO), had told a news conference in the capital on Thursday.

At least 12 cases were reported from Afghanistan and only six from Nigeria during the current year, he added.

Dr Mufti said the virus could only replicate in the human intestine so it has to be ensured that every child was vaccinated.

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