Federal Minister for Planning,Development and Special Initiatives, Asad Umar Monday said that significant reduction in coronavirus cases and mortality rate has been witnessed in the country including Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Addressing a press conference after presiding over the 4th Provincial Meeting the of National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) here at Civil Secretariat, the Minister said the high level meeting has deliberated and reviewed the work made by KP Government against COVID-19.
Chief Minister KP, Mahmood Khan, Minister for Health and Finance, Taimour Salim Jhagra, Special Assistant to CM for Information and Local Government Kamran Bangash were also present on the occasion.
He said it was fourth meeting of NCOC in Peshawar after similar meetings were held in Lahore, Karachi and Quetta. The Federal Minister said coronavirus has affected almost all districts of Khyber Pakthunkhwa due to arrival of oversees Pakistanis belonged to this province besides migration of it’s people from others provinces of Pakistan.
He said that containment of coronavirus pandemic was a great challenge in the initial days in the country especially in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
However, due to timely action of KP Government led by Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, Health Minister Taimour Salim Jhagra and Chief Secretary Dr Kazim Niaz have helped reduction in deaths and cases of coronavirus.
He said although spread of COVID-19 were contained in the country including Khyber Pakhtunkhwa but still a lot of efforts were required for the complete eradication of virus from the province.
Earlier, The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) in its special session held at Peshawar on Monday acknowledged the efforts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. Cchaired by Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar, the NCOC meeting discussed the ground check of standard operating procedures (SOPs) compliance, measures to control tourist visits to recreational spots, parks and tourism sites during Eid holidays. The meeting also discussed the update on smart lockdowns, hotspots and contact tracing, Anti COVID-19 strategy of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government, disease prevalence and low testing in various KP cities and Epi Curve Chart data.
Chief Minister KP Mahmood Khan hosted the NCOC special session. Chief Secretary KP and other senior officials of the provincial government were also present on the occasion.
Addressing the meeting, Chief Minister Mahmood Khan welcomed the NCOC team and expressed his gratitude to Asad Umar for acknowledging the efforts made by the provincial government to cope with the contagion.
He dedicated the success in overcoming the mounting spike of COVID deaths and positive cases to his entire team.
The NCOC forum, the Chief Minister said should permanently remain intact as it would be helpful in coping with many other emergency situations and disasters through better coordination with the provinces to amicably resolve many provincial issues.
Mahmood Khan mentioned that the tourism sector was a significant part of the provincial economy and there was much pressure on the provincial government to lift the ban and any decision of NCOC regarding this would be implemented in its full spirit.
Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Asad Umar said the efforts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government and the district administration in controlling the contagion outbreak deserved commendation and appreciation.
The way in which the leadership of all the provinces came together to control the pandemic with tireless work and tremendous measures, any complacency could exacerbate the situation. “We need to rigorously and effectively implement smart lockdowns, SOPs and safety measures. We have to ensure more efficiency and strict enforcement of the health guidelines.”
On the outset of Eid-ul-Adha, Asad Umar said there was need to stop the flow of tourists between the provinces and towards the famous tourist destinations of the country.