NDMA chairman says 2,000 additional ventilators to be sought from China
ISLAMABAD: National Disaster Management Authority Chairman Lt Gen Mohammad Afzal said on Monday that keeping in view the need of the country during the coronavirus pandemic, 2,000 additional ventilators would be sought from China.
The Parliamentary Committee on Coronavirus Monitoring held its first meeting today, where the NDMA chairman gave a briefing. National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaisar presided over the 25-member bipartisan committee of the lawmakers comprising members from both the Houses of the Parliament.
In his briefing, the NDMA chairman said that there are more than 3,800 ventilators present in the country as of now. He added that the public sector has 2,200 ventilators while the rest are with the private sector.
He said that on April 9, around 500 more ventilators will reach Pakistan.
As for the medical staff fighting the virus on the frontline, the authority’s chairman said that 29,000 medical kits have been provided to the provinces.
“137 hospitals have been allocated for fighting the virus,” he said, adding that medical kits will be sent to the incharges of all the hospitals.
He said that across the country 22 laboratories are operational in terms of testing and so far, 35,000 tests have been conducted.
The NDMA chairman said that the doctors from Lahore, Karachi, Rawalpindi will be trained regarding the ventilators.
In the first meeting, Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh and Adviser on Commerce and Industry Abdul Razak Dawood are expected to brief the legislators with regard to the impact of coronavirus pandemic on the country’s economy and on the measures to be taken for its revival.
Read also: Parliamentary committee formed to monitor coronavirus, prevention measures
The committee and its purpose
As per terms of reference (ToRs), the parliamentary committee would periodically review, monitor and oversee issues related to coronavirus disease and its impact on the economy.
The parliamentary committee will also periodically review, monitor and oversee the implementation on National Plan of Action on Coronavirus with a view to ensuring its expeditious implementation.
The committee would appoint a sub-committee to prepare detailed ToRs and the periodical report of the committee will be presented to both the Houses of the Parliament.
A few days back, after the formation of Parliamentary Committee on Coronavirus, Asad Qaisar in an interview to a private news channel said the parliamentary committee will keep an eye on all the activities on coronavirus and will take immediate action where ever it notices any dereliction of duty.
He had said that the government would put its policy before the parliamentary committee on economic issues and plan of action to take it out from the present crunch.
The committee comprises federal ministers Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Chaudhry Tariq Bashir Cheema, MNAs Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Raja Pervez Ashraf (nominee of PPP parliamentary leader), Maulana Asad Mehmood, Khalid Hussain Magsi, Nawabzada Shah Zain Bughti, Amir Haider Khan Hoti, Muhammad Akthar Mengal and Ghaus Bux Khan Mehar.
The parliamentary leaders from Senate included in the committee are senators Leader of House in the Senate Syed Shibli Faraz, Mushahidullah Khan, Sherry Rehman, Barrister Muhammad Ali Saif, Aurangzeb Khan, Mir Hasil Khan Bizenjo, Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Hyderi, Sirajul Haq, Muhammad Usman Khan Kakar, Sitara Ayaz, Dr Jehanzeb Jamaldini, Syed Muzaffar Hussain Shah and Anwaar ul Haq Kakar.
Federal ministers Pervez Khattak, Asad Umar and Senator Azam Khan Swati and Prime Minister’s Advisor on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh and Special Assistant on Health Dr Zafar Mirza, respectively will be ex-officio members of the committee.