Islamabad: President Asif Ali Zardari today visited and interacted with the elected representatives as well as concerned government officials of the flood affected areas of Sindh and monitored the flood relief activities in these districts through satellite video conferencing from the special Flood Control Cell of Aiwan-e-Sadr.
Spokesperson to the President Mr. Farhatullah Babar said that under directions of the President the Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah and relevant provincial ministers including MQM provincial ministers were encamped in Mirpurkhas to discuss issues about Mirpurkhas division comprising of Mirpurkhas, Tharparkar, Sanghar and Umerkot via video conferencing.
The spokesperson said that during today’s video conference, the President directed Chief Minister Sindh, Syed Qaim Ali Shah, public representatives of the flood affected areas and all concerned officials to expedite relief work and step up efforts so that all those left without shelters in the flood affected areas get shelters before the fast approaching winter season.
Those who were present during today’s video conferencing included among others Dr. Fehmida Mirza, Speaker National assembly, Syed Naveed Qamar, Minister for Water and Power, Secretary General to the President Mr. M. Salman Faruqui, Nawab Yousuf Talpur, MNA, Ms Sherry Rehman, MNA, Ms. Fouzia Wahab, MNA, Ms. Farahnaz Ispahani, MNA, Spokesperson to the President Mr. Farhatullah Babar, Mr. Zafar Iqbal Qadir Chairman NDMA, Mr. Ali Arshad Hakeem, Chairman NADRA and other senior officials of the concerned departments.
The Spokesperson said that during briefing on Mirpurkhas district, the President was informed that over thirty one thousand tents, over 3 lacs Family Packs, twenty three thousand blankets, nearly eight hundred water purification units, three de-watering pumps, over sixteen thousand mosquito nets have been distributed in Mirpurkhas alone along with other supplies including drinking water, medicines and food items for over 7 lacs flood affectees in the district.
In Sanghar, over thirty five thousand tents, two hundred forty one thousand Family Packs, six de-watering pumps, four thousand mosquito’s nets and other food items and commodities have been provided for over 1 million flood and rain affectees in Sanghar, the meeting was informed.
The concerned DCOs informed the President about health facilities and availability of medicines in these districts along with other steps taken in light of the President’s earlier directives to prevent outbreak of various diseases particularly dengue fever and Hepatitis.
The President also inquired about need assessment and supply position of various commodities in the affected areas of Sindh.
The Spokesperson said that on a point raised by the Speaker National Assembly Ms. Fehmida Mirza about the stagnant water in Badin, the President directed that a special team of experts of WAPDA should visit Badin immediately and propose a drainage plan on a permanent basis.
Fehmida Mirza had pointed that most of the floodwater drained out from other areas had stagnated in Badin and urged that special plans needed for drainage in Badin.
The Chief Minster informed that, in line with the President’s directives, he along with the concerned cabinet members are visiting and monitoring relief activities in all the affected districts of Sindh and addressing the problems of the affected people on priority basis. He also said that he would continue to visit flood affected areas physically and through video conferencing to step up relief activities.
The President said that the flood havoc may be a regular feature due to climatic change and called for making long term plans to meet such eventualities in the future as well. He called for a study to be carried out to examine feasibility of diverting floodwaters to the natural catchment areas in deserts for use in the future and for irrigating parched and dry land in interior Sindh.
The Spokesperson said that the President also directed that all procurements for the flood areas be placed on the web for transparency and accountability. He said that a proper inventory of goods be prepared for each district and Taluka and the record of the stores and machinery be properly catalogued and tabulated to check misuse and pilferage.
The President also enquired about the progress made in the distribution of Pakistan Cards among flood victims and called for stepping up the process, the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson said that the MQM provincial ministers present with the Chief Minister at Mirpurkhas appreciated the President’s concern and monitoring the flood situation through satellite video conferencing.
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