By Zahir Shah Sherazi
Polio workers in Khyber refuse to vaccinate children
Polio workers in some parts of Khyber refused to carry on with the drive over non-payment of stipends from the previous three campaigns, sources said.
Workers in some areas of Landi Kotal and Jamrud have also refused to conduct the vaccination drive, citing non-payment of their previous dues.
On the other hand, authorities said that the funds though released had been embezzled at the local level, adding that the matter was being investigated.
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Dr Sarfaraz Afridi, coordinator for the polio vaccination drive in Khyber Agency, said that the payment had been released but had been fraudulently withdrawn at the local level. He added that the political administration and concerned authorities have been asked to probe into the matter.
Two days earlier, another polio case had been reported in Khyber in an 18-months-old female child from the Akakhel area of Bara.
The governments failure to reach out to unvaccinated children has already taken up the total number of polio cases in Khyber to 46.
Khyber also has the highest number of reported polio cases after the restive North Waziristan Agency. Moreover, a recent World Health Organisation (WHO) report said Pakistan was responsible for nearly 80 per cent of polio cases reported globally.
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