By: The Kabul Times
KABUL: In presence of President Ashraf Ghani, the Ministry of Public Health signed three contracts with Housing Construction Corporation, UNICEF and WHO on Thursday evening at the Presidential Palace, a statement said.
The contracts which are funded by the Asian Development Bank will contribute to the efforts of the government to deal with covid-19 and its aftermaths and to help in providing more efficient health services to the Afghan citizens through construction and renovation of hospitals and procurement of medicines, medical and lab equipment, the presidential press office statement added.
Acting Minister of Public Health Ahmad Jawad Osmani said, “For all the contacts, a timeline for delivery of services and goods is agreed, and we expect the involved parties to implement their activities based on the agreed timeline.”
Narendra Singru, Country Director of ADB for Afghanistan said these major contracts will enhance the capacity of the Afghan health sector and to support the government response to covid-19.
First Vice President Amrullah Saleh in his remarks lauded the government leadership for excellent management of the response to covid-19 and appreciated the private sector, volunteers and all classes of society for playing a contributive role during the time of crisis.
The first vice-president said, “Corona surfaces a lot of our strengths and weaknesses, but we did well against all the predicted odds in the country.”
“We ensured that the Covid did not turn us into a Covid-centric state,” added First Vice-President Saleh while underscoring that the government, under the leadership of President Ghani, could manage economy, the peace process, foreign policy and other emerging crises during the spread of the pandemic.
He also stressed that a second wave of corona is looming but assured the government has the capacity and braces to cope with it.
President Ashraf Ghani said it is a historic day that ADB sings a contract with a government corporation where speediness, transparency and proper management are taken into account.
The president expressed satisfaction over the five-month timeline set for construction of the hospitals and underscored that the process to finalize the hospitals structure and equip them with essential facilities should simultaneously begin right after the construction is over.
“The current normalcy must not lull us into a false sense of security as the risk of a second of wave of corona is real,” said the president while assuring that the government has learned significant lessons during the spread of the pandemic and is able to move forward successfully in case of looming a second wave.
President Ghani extended gratitude to the health professionals and workers who are at the front line of fighting an invisible enemy.
He stressed that the National Health Program will be overhauled in terms of segregating the managerial and technical/professional duties in the health sector.