KARAK/KHAR: The people of Sarki Lawagher, Shagi Lawagher and adjacent localities in Karak district on Monday refused to let health workers vaccinate their children against polio over unavailability of facilities in the region.
However, they allowed vaccinators to carry out polio campaign after the tehsil administration officials assured them of early meeting of their demand.
In the morning, local residents and their elders gathered near the seminary of Sarki Lawagher and demonstrated against unavailability of gas and drinking and irrigation water to the area.
They also declared that health workers won’t be allowed to administer polio drops to children in the region.
Elders Ramzan Shah, Abdur Rehman, Mosahib Gul and Zainullah told protesters that around 30,000 people lived in the region but they were without gas, electricity and drinking water and that neither roads were blacktopped nor were canals built to carry water from Lawagher dam to the local residents’ land for irrigation.
They said the dam had been constructed on their land but the government had been denying them water.
The speakers said they would not allow vaccination of their children until their demands were met.
Later, tehsildar of Takht-i-Nusrati Gul Ghazi Khan met protesters and assured them that the district administration would meet their demand at the earliest.
Thereafter, protesters dispersed peacefully prompting health workers to administer polio drops to children.
They threatened to demonstrate again if facilities were not provided to the region without a week.
In Bajaur Agency, the three-day polio campaign began on Monday after paramedical staff ended boycott of vaccination.
Senior health official Dr Zakir Hussain told reporters in Khar that paramedics had ended boycott of polio campaign after suspension of two World Health Organisation officials, who allegedly misbehaved with some of their colleagues.
He said the announcement to end boycott of polio campaign came after leadership of paramedical staff held successful talks with the director general of Fata health services.
Dr Zakir said senior health and WHO officials had taken serious note of the two WHO officials’ alleged misbehaviour over their dispute with some paramedics.
“A three-member inquiry committee comprising senior officials of health the deportment and WHO has been formed to identify the main cause of the dispute,” he said.
The health official said the two WHO officials won’t supervise polio campaign.
According to the local health department officials, all paramedical staff and senior officials are participating in the campaign.