ISLAMABAD, Feb 21 (APP):President Dr Arif Alvi Thursday said that Pakistan was on the threshold of major change and after five years, it would become a hugely developed country.
Addressing a ceremony to mark the 25 years of the foundation of Strengthening Participatory Organization (SPO), a civil society organization, the president said that the people should keep hope as another industrial revolution was in the making.
He also referred to remarkable agreements signed between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia to bring in investment to Pakistan during the visit of Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman.
The event was attended by Chairperson SPO Javed Jabbar, CEO Saleem Malik, diplomats, parliamentarians, members of the SPO governing body, community representatives and people from various civil society organizations.The event which started with the recitation of verses from Holy Quran, Bible and Gayatri Mantra also marked the presentation of lifetime achievement award to Syed Abid Rizvia, a prominent broadcaster and member of the SPO Governing Board.
The president said health and education were the major sectors requiring the attention from the government as well as the civil society organizations. He said the NGOs played a remarkable role to fill the gaps by the government to cope with the people’s needs as well as the development sector.
He said Prime Minister Imran Khan had also started his post cricketing journey from building a cancer hospital. He said it was the bereavement in the family that brought major distress to the family and happiness comes when people serve the downtrodden.
He believed that no society could progress amid disparity with a few people having riches equalling billions of others and suffering from hunger.
The president said everyone citizen must feel proud of being a Pakistani as it was the only country that had hosted millions of refugees contrary to the developed countries which were reluctant to host even few hundred refugees.
He recalled the unprecedented philanthropic services were rendered by the people of Pakistan following the 2005 earthquake. However, he viewed that the corruption and bad governance had impeded the national development.
He said the people looked at and followed the NGOs for serving the deprived people even in remote areas and leveraging ideas and issues.
Calling for the importance of preventive measures against diseases, he said better sanitation and cleanliness could save huge money required for curative treatment.
He said Pakistan could benefit from the experiences of China in poverty alleviation that was possible trough promotion of education.
The community representatives from four provinces shared their experiences and thanked the SPO for helping them to become financially dependent and know their rights.
CEO of the SPO Saleem Malik apprised the audience about the functioning and achievements of the SPO during last 25 years. Chairperson Javed Jabbar, Co-Vice Chairperson Arifa Mazhar, Acting High Commissioner of Canada in Pakistan, Chairperson National Commission on Status of Women Khawar Mumtaz, Chairman Higher Education Commission Dr Tariq Banuri also addressed the gathering.