KARACHI-Sindh Minister for Local Government Syed Nasir Hussain Shah was informed on Tuesday that due to encroachment by mafias at some locations of Garbage Transfer Stations (GTS), there were disruptions in sanitation activities.

The minister was informed about the issue in a meeting held at the head office of Sindh Solid Waste Management Board (SSWMB), according to a news release.

SSWMB Managing Director Kashif Gulzar Sheikh briefed the minister that cleaning activities were being carried out on daily basis in connection with the preparations for the expected monsoon however there were disruptions in sanitation activities at some locations of GTS following the encroachments.

Syed Nasir Hussain Shah said the presence of such elements at any place in the city including landfill sites should be eliminated at all costs and full cooperation and support would be provided by the Sindh government.

The provincial minister said the government wanted to resolve the issue of garbage removal and encroachment from the city on any condition. All the security agencies would provide full support and cooperation for removal of encroachments.

Nasir Shah said the SWMB was being provided all needed resources compared to other institutions, so the performance should be even better, new garbage stations should be set up.

“Garbage must be picked up from the front of the houses. The door-to-door collection process should be made more thorough and regular media awareness should be started”, said the minister.

He ordered to finalize arrangements for the preparation of monsoon in all cities across the province. The SSWMB would get a lot of help in picking up offals from certain places on this Eid ul Azha.

Local Government Secretary Roshan Sheikh said that due to collective sacrifices this year, it would be easier for the Solid Waste Management Board to pick up offals from specific places as they would be dumped at specific locations and shifted to landfill sites from there. “We have issued instructions to the DMCs regarding the identification of places. We have a comprehensive plan, full support will be provided to Solid Waste, all the plans have been prepared”, he told the meeting.

The meeting was attended by Secretary Local Government Sindh Roshan Ali Sheikh, MD Solid Waste Management Board, Kashif Gulzar Sheikh and other concerned officers.

Children hospital faces shortage of drugs

Children Hospital North Karachi has been facing shortage of medicines and surgical disposables for the last two months. The hospital is being run by NGO Poverty Eradication Initiative (PEI) in collaboration with Sindh government under public–private partnership since last four years, but it is unable to provide medicines and surgical disposals to patients despite having millions of rupees annual budget.

The attendants of poor patients are compelled to buy drips, drip sets and surgical disposables from local medical stores due to unavailability of such items in emergency department. The doctors, nurses and paramedical staff working under Poverty Eradication Initiative has not been paid salary for two months due to shortage of funds. The healthcare workers have been facing financial crisis due to delay in release of salaries.

An administrative official of NGO told that Sindh government had not released funds to the NGO and it was facing problems to continue quality services in these circumstances. He said that if Sindh government continued this attitude the hospital would be shut down.

Chief Executive Director, Poverty Eradication Initiative (PEI), Dr Muhammad Toufiq, said the salaries of healthcare workers would be deposited in their banks accounts within a week. He claimed, there was no shortage of drugs in the hospital.