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ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi has said that creative and out-of-the-box solutions must be adopted to ensure 100 percent enrolment of children in schools and to promote preventive health mode of treatment for ensuring accelerated socioeconomic uplift of the people and the progress and development of the country.

The president expressed these views during a meeting with the Chairman of the National Commission for Human Development (NCHD), Col Dr Amirullah Marwat (Retd), who called on him, at Aiwan-e-Sadr, on Monday. Dr Nasim Ashraf, Chairman of the Pakistan Human Development Fund, and senior members of the NCHD were also present during the meeting.

Talking to the chairman of the NCHD, the president said that as per estimates only 68 percent of the country’s children were enrolled in schools at the primary level, which was alarming and observed that 100 percent enrolment of children must be ensured by instituting out-of-box solutions like using mosques from Fajr to Zohar prayer as schools and using hybrid modes of learning wherever possible.

He highlighted the need for adopting innovative information and communication technology (ICT) tools for imparting education at the grassroots level and imparting marketable skills to the youth through non-formal and formal education and skill development programmes.

The president said that there was a need to create a comprehensive system in the country to retain professionals, which included doctors, engineers, IT specialists and persons with high levels of skills in other sectors, to contribute their intellect, knowledge and expertise within the country and take tangible steps to stop the brain drain of precious human resources.

He said that the Pakistani diaspora, which was contributing its intellect, knowledge and expertise to the growth and development of its host countries, should be engaged to transfer their expertise, skills and knowledge to Pakistan through various online and hybrid platforms.

The president said that the large family size, especially in the poor segments of society, could be substantially reduced by meeting the need for contraceptives with longer efficacy by making them readily available to people, besides providing them with education and improving their economic status, which would contribute to bringing down the population growth in a reasonable timeframe.

The president lauded the NCHD’s role in the capacity building and training of teachers and health workers, its efforts for poverty alleviation, conducting research studies and data collection, and global resource mobilization to fund its operations.

He noted that the NCHD was playing a pivotal role in the critical fields of literacy and non-formal education, promoting universal primary education, and improving the condition of primary healthcare, which were essential for human resource development and for creating a quality workforce in the country.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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