KARACHI        -   The Sindh government and Department of International Development (DFID) have agreed to develop partnership in education, health particularly in mother-child health, water and sanitation and renewable energy sectors.

This decision was taken in a meeting between the Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and Head of Department for International Development (DFID) Ms Annabele Gerry. She was accompanied by Mr Mike Nithavriankis, the British Deputy High Commissioner. The chief minister was assisted by PSCM Sajid Jamal Abro, Secretary Education Ahsan Mangi and Secretary Investment Najam Shah.

The chief minister said that his government has allocated 25 percent funds of the total budget. “We are working hard to bring out of school back to school,” he said and added that there were 2.2 million children out of school.

The chief minister said that the DFID help in bringing the out of school back to school was needed. “You have to help us in developing strategy to bring out of school children back to schools,” he said and added he has evolved a plan to involve community to for enrolling out of school children.

The chief minister and the DFID chief also discussed repair of old school buildings and improvement of one-room schools by giving them additional classrooms and washroom facilities.

The DFID and the provincial government agreed to formalise the proposal for improvement of education sector. The secretary education would prepare working papers and the requirement for further approval.

MCH

The meeting also discussed investment in mother child health (MCH) by launching a nutrition programme aimed at fortification of food and supplements. The chief minister said that the provincial government has lunched MCH programmes in different districts, but food supplement and food fortification plan was needed for rural areas of the province, particularly for Thar, Kohistan, Kachho areas.

Water Sector

The visiting British deputy high commissioner told the chief minister that their company was interested in investing water and sanitation projects in the city. The chief minister directed Secretary Investment to invite the company and facilitate them to identify the scope of the work, particularly in water treatment, sanitation and desalination projects and their scope.

Renewable Energy

In the meeting the renewable energy projects, the wind and solar, were discussed. The British envoy said that their firms were interested in installing wind energy projects, if they were supported.

The chief minister directed Secretary Investment department to coordinate the British company and work out a plan for investment in the energy sector.