Murad blasts federal govt for mixed signals, lack of leadership
Says they did errors but didn't commit mistake of doing nothing
Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah called for a unified action to fight the coronavirus, as he was critical of the lack of coordination among the federal and provincial governments.
Addressing a press conference, he criticised the federal government and termed the mixed signals as very damaging, saying Prime Minister Imran Khan should define a clear strategy and SOPs to tackle the deadly pandemic.
The chief minister remarked that they had committed mistakes but didn’t commit the mistake of not doing anything.
Asking the prime minister to lead, he said had the lockdown imposed earlier, the situation would have been different.
The chief minister was critical of the fact that the provinces were being asked to do whatever they liked, saying the coronavirus could not be defeated without a joint action at the national level.
Murad warned of further spread, as he cited the rising number of cases in areas like Lyari, North Nazimabad and other congested populated areas of Karachi.
It was very difficult to control the situation in urban areas and would become out of control if the pandemic spread to the rural areas, the chief minister noted.
Stressing the need for extending the lockdown, Murad said he had been advised to impose the restrictions for another two weeks, but they could not do anything unless the federal government gave a clear line of action.
Lift the lockdown if the Centre wanted to assemble the people for cash handouts, he remarked, adding that the Sindh government with the help charities had ensured distribution of 300,000 ration packets silently.
About the criticism by the PTI leaders, he rejected the claims made about lack of ventilators in interior Sindh, saying ICU beds were available at the top hospitals of Larkana, Jacobabad and others.
Isolation centres containing at least 100 beds had been established in every district, which could be expanded up to 500, if and when required, Murad told the reporters.
He, however, said that the healthcare system had collapsed in even developed countries but they were trying their best in the available resources.
The chief minister said they had money but not the necessary equipment, but added that the process of producing personal protection equipment (PPE) locally was started with the help of the textile sector.
However, the N95 masks would have to be imported because they could not be produced in the country, he added.
Murad especially thanked the doctors and other healthcare staff for working diligently in the fight against the coronavirus.