Peshawar incident affect anti-polio drive in Landi Kotal

Peshawar incident affect anti-polio drive in Landi Kotal

Ahmad Nabi

LANDI KOTAL: Scores of frightened parents in Khyber district on Tuesday refused to feed polio vaccine to their children, following the Peshawar incident. It is to be mentioned here that last day approximately 1000 children of two private schools of Mashu Khel, Badhber, the suburb areas of Peshawar had got ill after allegedly being administered anti-polio drops.

The news spread on the social media in the entire country in no time and in spite of the clarification of the health officials that the vaccine was safe, number of parents announced their boycott to feed anti-polio drops to their children. Ali Said, resident of Meri Khel, Zakha Khel said that they were regularity feeding polio vaccine to the children but previous day rumors spreading in width length and of the country that due to vaccination children number of children expired in Peshawar, scared them and on the 2nd day of the anti-polio drive, when the polio workers approached to their village,they refused to feed them.

“When their confidence is restored that the vaccine is harmless and doesn’t affect child health, they will restart feeding it to their children”, he remarked. Local polio official in Landi Kotal while providing details said that thousands of children were denied to feed anti-polio drops. He added that temporary refusals were belonging to localities of Khuga Khel, Shiekhmal Khel, Piro Khel, Shelman, Zakha Khel etc.

On a query he said that although, the campaign was carried out with assistance of security persons but keeping in view, the prevailed uncertain situation, they could not force the temporary refusal to get vaccinate their children. On the condition of anonymity, a polio worker in Sultan Khel said that as routine polio campaign, he visited every house of the assigned village but ironically maximum number of parents negated to vaccinate their children.

The parents were on the view that the current polio drive terrified them as it suffered school children in Peshawar, he added and saying that in next campaign they would mentally be prepared to administer anti-polio vaccine to their children. When agency surgeon Dr. Ayub was contacted on the matter he said that they were facing nearly 80% refusal in the entire districts in ongoing anti-polio campaign but they continued it and would complete the seven days long anti-polio drive.

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