LANDI KOTAL, Nov 16: The political administration of Khyber Agency on Friday warned parents that they would be sent to the lock-up if they refused to administer oral polio vaccine to their children under the age of five years.

The warning was issued during a meeting of the local administration and health department officials with the elders and clerics of Landi Kotal.

The meeting was told that the political administration was concerned about high incidence of polio in Khyber Agency and wanted to effectively check it.

Political tehsildar Arshad Afridi said stern action would be taken against the people declining immunisation of their children and if necessary, they would be put behind bars.

He urged religious scholars and prayer leaders to educate the people on importance of vaccination against polio during Friday sermons and day-to-day interactions with the public.

Speaking on the occasion, World Health Organisation representative in Fata Dr Wazir Akbar said clerics could play a very effective role in eradication of polio from Fata as they were heard and believed by the people of tribal areas.

“Religious scholars could be a great help in convincing the people opposed to vaccination of their children in Khyber Agency,” he said.

He said Khyber Agency topped the list of polio-affected Fata areas with 12 of the 20 cases of the crippling cases reported this year. — Correspondent

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