Asad Umar stresses following safety steps as COVID-19 cases rise
ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Planning and Development and Head of National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC) Asad Umar has said the invention of COVID-19 vaccine is no excuse for citizens to stop following standard operation producers (SOPs) and other safety steps to restrain the virus’s spread.
Talking to a private news channel, the NCOC head said that the vaccine would not resolve the issue and that implementation of safety measures was still necessary.
He said, “Pakistan is recording further new cases, as compared to the past few weeks, and that the increased pressure is upsetting the country’s health care system”.
Asad Umar said that the best way to fight the plague, in the given situation, is to make sure that we follow the standard operation procedures (SOPs) issued by the government to curtail the virus’s spread.
“Pakistan is committed to providing the vaccine,” he said, adding that a national effort was being made to achieve this objective, while association and provincial governments were involved to make it possible.
He also warned that COVID-19 is rapidly spreading in the densely populated areas of Pakistan and the positivity ratio in Karachi is the highest.
The NCOC head said that they had permitted the private sector to import the vaccine so that Pakistanis who are in haste could be immunized. “We could not bring covid-19 vaccine for the whole population instantly as it will take some time,” he said.
Asad Umar informed that they have permitted the private sector to import vaccines so that those who are in hurry could get the vaccination.
The NCOC head said that it was the duty of the government to conduct anti-Covid immunization free of cost and so far they have not charged a single penny for it.
Earlier, a countrywide Covid vaccination drive started and 0.5 million doses of the Sinopharm vaccine gifted by China is being used in the first phase. Sindh has been provided 84,000 doses of the vaccine, Punjab 70,000, KP 65,000, and Balochistan 10,300 doses.