All Pakistan Memon Federation represents different groups of memon communities working for the betterment of society in various areas of Pakistan.
In view of the need to involve civil society in polio eradication an Ulema workshop was organized by the All Pakistan Memon Federation at Federation (APMF) Hall on December 31, 2020.
The workshop was chaired by Chair Rotary’s Ulema Committee Haji Hanif Tayyab and facilitated by Trustee/ National Chair Aziz Memon, it was attended by Dr. Altaf Bosan National Consultant BMGF, Fayyaz Abbasi EOC Sindh Coordinator, Dr. Akram Sultan Project Director EPI Sindh, Dr. Ahmed Ali Shaikh BMGF Sindh, Dr. Muhammad Amir WHO, Abid Hussain UNICEF, PP Muhammad Ovais Coordinator Rotary’s Ulema Committee. It was also attended by the leaders of Memon community.
The workshop was initiated by reciting Naat by Qari Ishaq and Tilawat by Molana Zohaib Shafiq.
President APMF Hanif Motalani expressed his welcome to the participants. He said memon organizations as a part of civil society are already providing services to mankind. "This workshop give us a new concept to work for polio eradication and I assured you that all groups of memon organizations will join hands with the Government to make polio free Pakistan".
Muhammad Ovais, Coordinator Rotary’s Ulema Committee appreciated the efforts of the polio teams which are visible at airports, railway and bus stations and house to house vaccination. Civil societies compliment their efforts in social media in their circles to reduce refusals and emphasize vaccination of every child less than five years of age. He also emphasized to comply with all SOPs to address the COVID 19 situation.
Dr. Muhammad Amir WHO said this is a great opportunity to interact with all memon jammats (groups) and involve them in the noble cause. He said these memon jammats will be involved in refusal areas to convert refusals and cover missed children. He requested to hold a meeting with the presidents of all memon Jammata (groups) where WHO will give a presentation and involve all groups at their respective areas in the province. Haji Hanif Tayyab seconds the suggestion and said it would be a good step to involve all Jammats.
Dr. Ahmed Ali Shaikh on behalf of EOC Sindh briefly elaborated the current situation of polio and the 2nd wave of COVID 19 through a powerpoint presentation. He gave the statistics of polio and COVId 19 cases in Karachi. He added that despite numerous challenges during the year due to COVID 19, we continued our polio program and started working for COVID 19 simultaneously. He added during the second half of the year we conducted several ulema workshops at community level in polio high risk areas. He gave the polio situation in 2020 and encouraged community engagement initiatives. He stressed the role of ulema is very important to gain the confidence of refusal communities. He gave details of community engagement sessions with local ulema of polio high risk areas.
Abid Hussain UNICEF spoke on advocacy. He said this time we have strategies to implement a new advocacy strategy which comprises to encounter fake news about polio vaccination and wider coverage on electronic and print media.
Prof. Dr. Molana Abdul Jabbar Qureshi spoke on Health Prospective in Islam. He spoke on parental responsibilities in the light of Islam. He said our religion teaches us to be careful for our children upbringing and save them from all diseases. He added that we should be very vigilant about the health concerns of our children and do not let them unvaccinated.
He also said, involvement of local khateeb and Ulema to disseminate polio messages in their Friday sermons is very important. so that everyone in communities should know about the importance of polio vaccination and precautions for COVID 19.
Molana Dr. Munir Shafiq-Consultant Al Mustafa Medical center highlighted the medical point of view of vaccination. He gave details of routine vaccination and said it is essential to every child. He discussed the need for repeated doses of polio vaccination due to circulation of virus in the environment. He gave the details of all nine diseases needed vaccination to every child.
Past President APMF MNA Abdul Aziz Memon
He said in view of increased polio cases and COVID 19 situations it became imperative that all civil society groups should work together. At this point of time the event gives us a good opportunity to interact with the polio stakeholders and involve our groups in polio eradication under the guidance of experts.
Aziz Memon Trustee / National Chair PNPPC
The chair introduced the Polio partners who joined this important event. He gave a short introduction of Dr. Altaf Bosan BMGF, Fayyaz Abbasi EOC Coordinator, Dr. Akram Sultan EPI, Dr. Ahmed Ali Shaikh BMGF Sindh, Dr. Amir WHO and Abid Hussain UNICEF. He appreciated the long time contribution/ commitment of all stakeholders to bring the polio cases down and their endeavors in increasing routine immunization.
He highlighted the importance of two drops of OPV. He said only two drops can prevent your child from contracting polio. He said that compared to all the diseases mentioned by the other speakers, only polio can be eliminated like measles from the face of the world. He added we have eliminated smallpox in 1968 and we can eradicate polio in Pakistan and the rest of the world.
He also pointed out that a new case has surfaced from Mastung Balochistan. The main reason for these polio cases is zero dosage and weak routine immunization.
Haji Hanif Tayyab - Chair Rotary’s Ulema Committee said the memon groups must give more importance to religious leaders. He said in the current situation, the role of all ulemas become more important. There is a serious need to sensitize local Prayer Leaders to understand polio vaccination and convince parents not to hide their children.
He discussed frequently asked questions regarding misconception of polio vaccines and negative propaganda. He said the majority of people concerned about its expiry date. He said in many public meetings, I showed the expiry date on the vaccine vial. They also ask about ingredients of the vaccines which are clearly visible on the bottle. He appreciated the presence of all influential religious leaders in the workshop and said, we must continue our efforts until we eradicate polio from our country. He said we all want Covid-19 vaccine but refuse the polio vaccine which is available for free to safeguard our children from lifelong paralysis.
He said we have already involved Sir Syed University, Dow University of Health Sciences and Urdu University of Science & Technology. However there is a need to interact with the students of other universities of Karachi to involve the coming generation in polio eradication and to eliminate refusals from all areas. He informed that we will conduct ulema workshops in these universities in January 2021.
He also briefed participants about Islamabad Declaration and details of FATWAs. He urged that the Government should print as many copies of the Declaration for distribution to all concerns.
Trustee/ National Chair Aziz Memon thanked Haji Hanif Tayyab and appreciated his commitment to work for polio eradication not only in Karachi but in difficult parts of the country despite his weak health.
At the end Haji Hanif Tayyab thanked all participants for their zealous efforts and commitment to kick out this crippling disease from the country. He offered prayers at the end of the event.