PESHAWAR: The private schools and colleges of the provincial capital on Tuesday refused to allow vaccinators to administer anti-polio drops to students on campus citing the alleged adverse reaction by vaccination in a local school as the reason.
They urged the government to ensure the students’ vaccination at their homes to avoid any ‘mishap’.
All Pakistan Private Schools Association, Peshawar, president Dr Zakir Shah and National Education Council president Nazar Hussain told reporters at the Peshawar Press Club that they were shocked by the alleged vaccination reaction and considered it to be a very unfortunate happening.
“We cannot allow anti-polio teams to vaccinate children in our schools as owners cannot stand the parents’ pressure,” he said.
Dr Shah said if parents declined the children’s vaccination at home, then how private schools could allow that on their premises against the will of parents.
Accompanied by leaders of other private school associations, he said the alleged reaction had caused panic among parents, who took their children to hospitals for checkup.
Dr Shah said since schools were very sensitive places, the government should ensure the vaccination of children in the presence of their parents.
He feared that the parents could set schools on fire if their children’s vaccination on campus caused any reaction.
“The government should stop sending anti-polio teams to educational institutions for their safety,” he said warning the relevant officials will be held responsible in case of any mishap.
Mr Nazar Hussain suggested that the anti-polio teams visit the houses of students after 2pm for their vaccination in the parents’ presence.
“We (schools) can’t allow the students’ vaccination in the absence of parents,” he said.
Mr Hussain said the government should register a case against all those involved in the Peshawar incident.
Published in Dawn, April 24th, 2019