UAE polio eradication efforts have saved millions of children in Pakistan: Pak envoy

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ISLAMABAD, Oct 23 (APP):As the world marks World Polio Day on Wednesday , the Ambassador of Pakistan to the UAE, Moazzam Ahmad Khan, has commended the UAE’s global efforts and financial contributions towards eradicating the polio virus and saving millions of children in Pakistan and other nations.
“We are very appreciative and grateful to the leadership of the UAE for helping the government of Pakistan in eradicating this disease and most importantly helping the people of Pakistan,” the Ambassador said this in a special message in recognition of the international day against polio.
The World Health Organisation, WHO, also acknowledged the immense contributions the UAE has made to eradicate this debilitating disease.
As the WHO Pakistan reported, tens of millions of children in Pakistan have been vaccinated against polio since the launch of the Emirates Polio Campaign in 2014 under the UAE Pakistan Assistance Programme, UAE-PAP.
The Ambassador said, “Unfortunately, Pakistan is still one of those countries which are suffering from this disease, although, the number has significantly reduced thanks to the campaign supported and financed Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.”
Pakistan with limited resources could not have done it alone without the help of the UAE, and the initiatives taken by Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Mr Khan said. “I understand under this initiative US$120 million has been earmarked which has resulted in saving the lives of millions of children in Pakistan and the world over.” Emirates News Agency, WAM reported.
The Ambassador also spoke about special ties between the UAE and Pakistan, saying, “This is a very special relationship, which was founded by late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the Founding Father of the UAE. He had a special love for the people of Pakistan, and it is basically his legacy, that I am so glad to see, now being carried forward by his sons, by the leadership of the UAE.”
He also thanked Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation. “I will particularly like to mention Sheikha Fatima, the Mother of the Nation. The whole (UAE) family has a special love for the people of Pakistan.”
“And this legacy was started by Sheikh Zayed, and now it is being carried forward by his sons, the leadership of Abu Dhabi, and particularly, of course, I would like to share the Polio campaign under the patronage of Sheikh Mohamed has been launched,” he added.
The Ambassador went on to say that the number of polio cases has reduced significantly, “but, we still have some cases being reported, and we also need to keep in mind this disease is reoccurring, and cases are traceable particularly in the remote northern areas of Pakistan.” The particular nature of the tribes in these areas are migratory tribes, the Ambassador explained, adding that the tribes keep moving from one place to another, making it difficult to keep track of those tribes and reaching individuals.