Govt striving for healthy Pakistan: Marriyum

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APP62-10 ISLAMABAD: April 10 – Ms. Gerda Verburg, Assistant Secretary General and Coordinator for the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement called on Ms. Marriyum Aurangzeb, Minister of State for IB & NH. APP

ISLAMABAD, April 10 (APP): Minister of State for Information,
Broadcasting and National Heritage Marriyum Aurangzeb while talking
to Assistant Secretary General and Coordinator for the Scaling Up
Nutrition (SUN) Movement Gerda Verburg here Monday said that the
Government of Pakistan was striving hard for a healthy Pakistan,
through addressing the problem of malnutrition, which it considered
a sine quo non for achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The setting up of a task force and special cell in the
National Assembly and similar entities in the provinces and
departments concerned amply demonstrated the commitment with which
the government was pursuing that objective, she added.
The minister felt that proactive collaboration and
coordination between SDGs and SUN Secretariat was critical for
realization of Pakistan’s vision 2025 and said that Pakistan was
keen to adopt best practices and learn from the expertise of other
countries to achieve the goal of a healthy Pakistan.
Marriyum Aurangzeb said that nutrition was the key to
achieving Sustainable Development Goals and acknowledged that it
was a multi-faceted issue, which was prevalent among infants,
children, mothers and adolescents.
She said that the executive was working with dedication and
diligence to advance the agenda of Sustainable Development Goals
under the parliamentary oversight and was making all possible
efforts to create a congenial and enabling environment to ensure
people’s access to healthy nutrients, safe drinking water and
adequate sanitation so that the children were not exposed to various
infections and diarrhoea.
To reduce stunting, it is imperative to focus on maternal
nutrition and nutrition among children, she stressed.
The minister informed Ms Gerda that Pakistan was the first
country, which had established its first secretariat of Sustainable
Development Goals where thematic sessions were conducted to provide
data and information to representatives of the people, so that they
could be able to address the issues in their respective
constituencies.
She said that regular debates were also held on the issue of
malnutrition with a view to deliberate on any further legislation
that might be required to facilitate efforts of the government and
other agencies in addressing the problem of malnutrition.
The Minister of State also emphasized the need for a coherent
communication strategy for mass awareness about the issue of
malnutrition and its dissemination to the masses through different
arms of the mass media.
She said that in her capacity as minister for information and
broadcasting and also as convener of SGDs she would utilize
different media outlets and employ all available resources to
promote this cause.
She further told the delegation that a robust and
comprehensive training programme had been launched for parliamentary
reporters to promote understanding and importance of the SDGs so
that they were better equipped to report on the subject.
She said that under the Prime Minister’s educational
programme, the curriculum of 422 schools was being revised in which
topics pertaining to malnutrition would also be incorporated.
Gerda Verburg appreciated the contribution of the Minister of
State towards the efforts for the achievement of Sustainable
Development Goals and hoped that Pakistan would not only persist
with those efforts but would also take further practical steps to
deal with the problem of malnutrition, simultaneously taking care of
the issue of stunting growth.