How can we expect to eradicate Polio and illiteracy when foot soldiers, namely ‘health workers and teachers’ are not being paid salaries, yet are expected to go unprotected to administer polio drops and teach poor children? Millions of dollars, given as grant and aid have been pilfered to buy expensive SUV for bureaucrats, sitting in air conditioned offices but no money is provided for safely transporting Lady Health Workers (LHW) or other polio teams? What can be more criminal than this?
If only for two months, families of all our VVIPs were to go abroad, on their own expense, and political havoc stopped in Islamabad, there would be enough police force and members of Elite Force and Rangers to accompany every Health Worker on a government owned vehicle to give them transport and safety. If army can be called to aid civil governments, our Forces can be deployed, if required for polio campaign in sensitive zones. The numerous bullet proof vehicles could be used for transporting LHW in these zones. If only there was political and administrative will, this menace that threatens to isolate us from rest of world could be controlled. Can we proudly justify being a nuclear nation, yet be declared as worst in all other socio economic indicators, such as polio, highest Breast Cancer in Asia and Hepatitis already an epidemic, yet emphasis is on building motorways, palatial housing societies with largest mosques surrounded be a sea of humanity living in desperation.
MALIK TARIQ ALI,
Lahore, November 28.