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Government committed to a polio-free Pakistan: PM

December 18, 2012

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf. - INP PHOTO

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf on Tuesday while strongly condemning the attack on polio field workers in Karachi and Peshawar, reiterated the resolve of the government to make Pakistan a polio-free country.

Chairing a meeting of Polio Task Force at the PM Secretariat in Islamabad, the prime minister said “we cannot, and will not allow polio to wreak havoc with the lives of our children.”

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf expressed deep shock and grief over the death of polio field team workers in the two cities, earlier in the day and paid tribute to their services.

He said it was only due to their efforts that the disease was being wiped out from the country. The prime minister also ordered the concerned authorities to conduct an enquiry into the incidents and bring the real culprits to book.

The prime minister directed the interior ministry to coordinate with the national polio eradication authorities and provide foolproof security to the polio teams.

The meeting was informed that 34 million children would be covered under the National Emergency Plan 2013 which will involve over 25,000 polio workers.

The Prime Minister said seeking a polio-free life was the fundamental right of the people and added “we would not allow polio to plague their lives.”

“This is the least we owe to our children and we will stay the course until polio is wiped out from the country,” he said.

The prime minister said the government has involved religious scholars, District Khateebs and Parliamentarians as part of effective communication strategy to achieve optimum results of anti-polio campaigns.

He termed the policy of engagement as quite successful. Raja Pervez Ashraf stressed the need to neutralise the message of those who resist the government's efforts of immunisation against polio.