Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination Federal Secretary Muhammad Ayub Sheikh said on Saturday that Ulema played a vital role in fight against polio.
Addressing Polio Orientation & Health Awareness Workshop of Ulema held at a hotel in Islamabad, secretary health said that the role of Haji Hanif Tayyab and the Islamic scholars was laudable in advocating for right of child to protection from polio.
He emphasized that advocacy by religious leaders could play a major role in furthering this noble cause.
The purpose of the workshop was to involve religious stakeholders for polio orientation and health awareness to increase coverage of polio vaccination and reaching to refusals and missed children in difficult parts of the country.
The workshop was attended by 82 Ulemas from different religious sects and representatives of Ministry of Health, National EOC, UNICEF and WHO.
The secretary health expressed the commitment of the ministry to make all out efforts for complete eradication of polio from the country.
He said the National Action Plan (NAP) of the government had a major impact in reaching the inaccessible children.
He said that in order to defeat polio, everyone including religious leaders, civil society, government functionaries, opinion leaders and parents would have to play their role.
Pakistan Polio Plus Ulema Committee (PNPPC) Chairman Haji Muhammed Hanif Tayyab spoke on the “Islamabad Declaration” and said that all Ulema in principle and as per the Islamic point of view hold that polio vaccination does not harm children, it is safe and approved by the Organisation of Islamic Council (OIC).”
PNPPC National Chairman Aziz Memon spoke on Rotary’s objective and mission to eradicate polio worldwide. He said there was an 80% reduction in polio cases in 2015 as compared to cases reported in the same period in 2014.
“Now we are much closer to kick out polio from our country and therefore extra effort is imperative through our learned religious scholars and Ulema at district, union council and grassroots level communities to address especially Pashtun communities migrating from South Waziristan to other parts of the country through border areas of KPK and Balochistan,” Aziz Memon said.