Voice of the People

55

Articles and letters may be edited for the purposes of clarity and space. They are published in good faith with a view to enlightening all the stakeholders. However, the contents of these writings may not necessarily match the views of the newspaper.

Morality and ethics of governance

Any system of governance, especially democracy can deliver only if elected head of state exhibits compassion, civility, adherence to universally accepted norms of morality, ethics and no conflicts of interest. Tolerance to dissent, constitutional supremacy and transparency is another vital necessity for democracy to deliver.

The irony is that Pakistan, created through a constitutional struggle led by politicians of integrity with principles was replaced by autocratic juntas who replaced ballot with bullet and compromised state sovereignty to prolong their illegitimate rule. If only we had adhered to Jinnah’s vision, geography and political history of Pakistan would not have suffered humiliation of defeat and surrender, nor terrorism and extremism it today faces and an economy in perpetual state of decline.

The decadence of ethics and morality within corridors of power, since 1956 onwards, can be gauged from shameful controversy surrounding disposal of Toshakhana gifts, retained by heads of state and other paid or elected public office holders at a depreciated value assessed by subordinates for benefit of these VVIPs. All over the civilized world head of states traditionally exchange gifts as a gesture of goodwill between two states. In America Constitution Article 1, section 9 prohibits anyone in US Govt from receiving a personal gift from a foreign head of state without consent of Congress.

During President Reagan Administration, the law required an annual listing of all gifts valued at $35 or more, if the total value of such gifts from a source totalled $100 in a year. This maximum retainable value of all gifts received by an individual a year, based on market value was raised to $180 and today is $500. Gifts not retained by the President or First Lady at market value are transferred to National Archives and become part of presidential museum library. What more embarrassment will it take for rules to be enforced in Pakistan prohibiting retaining gifts by PM, President and other public office holders at market value.

MALIK TARIQ ALI

Lahore

Mugabe is

the cause!

It is deeply disappointing that ZANU PF manipulated Zimbabweans to believe that sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe have caused chaos, corruption, economic collapse, dysfunctional healthcare, unstable and confusing multiple currencies, poor agricultural farming and high youth unemployment.

It should be eloquently explained to Zimbabwean citizens that President Mnangagwa and his regime have caused all the mayhem and decay in Zimbabwe because they have failed to govern effectively the country endowed with abundant natural resources including rich mineral deposits, arable tracks of land, pristine flora and fauna, and highly literate human resource.

The actual fact on the ground is that Mnangagwa has failed to transform the fortunes of the country into meaningful tangible benefit to Zimbabweans. Mnangagwa should not act blindly, his incapacities and inabilities are crystal clear and should be dumped into the history dustbin.

CHARITY MAHUNI

London

Hepatitis awareness

Through the columns of your esteemed newspaper, I would highlight one of the serious issue i.e: Hepatitis awareness. Affecting millions of people worldwide, viral hepatitis has become a global health problem. Transmitted via exposure to contaminated blood, Hepatitis-B virus (HBV), Hepatitis-C virus (HCV) and Hepatitis-D virus (HDV) lead to chronic hepatitis in majority of cases. Hepatitis A(HAV) and E(HEV) are transmitted primarily via feasal–oral route and mostly resolved after causing acute hepatitis.

According to WHO estimates, every year 1.4 million new cases of (HAV) and 20 million of (HEV) are reported globally. Approximately, 100,000 people per year and 60,000 people per year die due to acute HAV and HEV infection. Contamination of sewerage with water resources has a major role in the HEV spread in Pakistan. According to WHO estimates up to 75% of therapeutic injections received in Southeast Asia are unsafe.

Unfortunately, the standardized practices in provision of safe blood products are not followed by all blood banks, leading to spread of hepatitis B, C & D. Exposure to contaminated instruments or blood during surgeries, sharing sharps tools like razors, males getting their shave from communal barbers, prior hospitalizations, parental transmission are the other factors identified attributing to the spread of Hepatitis B, C & D.

These findings clearly suggest and support the need to improve sanitation, provision of clean water and provision of sterilized and clean medical instruments.

SADIA BARKAT

Materkot

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