Risk mitigation important to stop second wave of coronavirus: Asad Umar

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ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Planning Asad Umar on Tuesday emphasised that “risk mitigation” is important to stop the second wave of the novel coronavirus in the country.

The minister stressed the importance of risk mitigation in the morning session of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC). The meeting was also attended by all the chief secretaries of the provinces via a video link.

“Actions have consequences and so far we as a nation and all stakeholders have taken right steps which helped us in saving precious lives and contain the disease spread,” Umar told the officials. He also attributed the people’s “proactive response” for the country’s successful control of the coronavirus.

“The people of Pakistan have shown great maturity and responsibility to not only protect themselves but following guidelines to ensure other’s safety and wellbeing,” said the minister. He also lauded media for their “effective messaging” for behaviour change and help in reaching out to masses.

Asad Umar, who also oversees Pakistan’s COVID-19 response, observed that the people of Pakistan and media are two important pillars which made the entire effort against coronavirus a success. However, the minister emphasised, that in light of the National Coordination Committee meeting yesterday, there is a need to ensure safety measures including wearing of face mask and following health guidelines.

Meanwhile, the chief secretary Sindh informed the forum that the provincial government was “monitoring education institutes and marriage halls”.

He also assured the participants that the provincial government was ensuring that administrative measures are followed “in line of health guidelines issued by NCOC”.

On the other hand, chief secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa told the meeting that they have taken administrative measures against certain restaurants and marriage halls for violations of coronavirus protocols.

While chief secretary Balochistan told the NCOC that the government’s trace, test and quarantine strategy has led to a “positive improvement” in coronavirus cases in the province.

The NCOC was also informed that 3,497 smart lockdowns have been imposed in 103 districts of the country. It was also informed that 52% of the coronavirus tests were being done due to proactive TTQ strategy.