CM forms ministerial body to sensitize stakeholders

Sher Afzal

KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah by witnessing the current abnormal COVID spike in the province particularly in Karachi has constituted a ministerial committee to sensitize all the stakeholders including shopkeepers, traders, transporters and politicians to cooperate with the government in the supreme interest of the public health, otherwise nothing will remain under control.
This he said while presiding over a meeting of the Provincial Task Force on Coronavirus here at the CM House on Tuesday.
The meeting was attended by provincial ministers Nasir Shah, Jam Ikram Dhrejo, Advisor Law Murtaza Wahab, Parliamentary Secretary on Health Qasim Siraj Soomro, ACS Home Qazi Shahid Pervez, PSCM Sajid Jamal Abro, Commissioner Karachi Naveed Shaikh, Adl IG Karachi Imran Yakoob, Secretary Finance Hassan Naqvi, Secretary School Education Ahmed Bux Narejo, Secretary Health Kazim Jatoi, Dr Bari, Dr Faisal, Dr Sara Khan, Dr Qaiser Sajjad, VC Dow Dr Saeed Qureshi, representatives of Corps-5, Rangers and other organizations. The chief minister reviewed the overall COVID situation and termed it `alarming’ and then he audited the available facilities at government hospitals and decided to declare some more government hospitals as COVID facilities.
Briefing the meeting, Secretary Health Dr Kazim Jatoi said that COVID detection ratio in the province has reached 12.7 percent which was the highest in the fourth wave. In Karachi the detection rate was recorded at 26.32 percent on July 26. At this the chief minister said that on July 20 Karachi had 20 percent detection rate which went on increasing to 23 percent on July 21, 21.54 percent on July 22, 23.46 percent on July 24, 24.82 percent on July 25 and 26.32 percent on July 26. “This is quite a critical situation,” he said.
The meeting was informed that during the last one week, from July 19 to 25, 2021 COVID detection ratio in Karachi East was 33 percent, Korangi 21 percent, Central 20 percent, West 19 percent, Malir and South 17 percent each. It was pointed out that during the Month of July we had 362 deaths stemming from COVID-19, of them 64 percent or 233 were on ventilators, 23 percent or 85 off-ventilators and 13 percent or 44 at homes. Reviewing ventilator facilities at government hospitals, the CM was told that out of 686 ICU-bed with ventilators 76 were occupied and out of total 1,547 HDU beds 690 were occupied.
At this the chief minister said that hospitals were coming under pressure, therefore he directed secretary health to make COVID facilities at three hospitals of the labour department, police hospital, Liaquatabad and New Karachi hospitals and establish a Marquee-type of arrangement at Service and Korangi hospitals.
The chief minister was informed that COVID ward has been established in Abbasi Shaheed Hospital where 10 patients have been admitted. Mr Shah directed the secretary health to provide technical staff to the COVID facilities where required.
Sharing the situation of coronavirus in major cities of the country, the meeting was told that Muzafarabad has two patients on ventilators, Islamabad 23, Peshawar 21, Lahore 81, Multan 18 and Karachi 76. The chief minister directed the health department to conduct more COVID tests in the city and trace the contacts of the infected person so that its further spread could be contained. The provincial government has received 6,900,997 doses of different vaccines, of them 5,620,977 have been utilized. Decisions: The chief minister observed that some political friends were issuing irresponsible statements against closure of markets or other activities. “This results in misleading the public,” he said and added he was taking strict measures just to save people of the province from the pandemic. He constituted a committee comprising Local Government Minister Syed Nasir Shah, Minister Industries Jam Ikram Dharejo, Minister Transport Awais Qadir Shah and Advisor Law Murtaza Wahab with the task to meet with all the stakeholders, including politicians and sensitize them about the alarming COVID situation.
Shah directed Adl IG Police and Commissioner Karachi to ensure timely closure of the markets, and also close tuition centers and private gyms which were still operating.
He urged people of the province to stay home and avoid going out of home without any valid reason.