The Federal Parliament Secretariat has halted its drive of administering its staff the second dose of Covishield vaccine citing jab shortage after those not working in the parliament were found having participated in the inoculation drive.
As a result, employees of the Parliament Secretariat, parliamentary journalists and security personnel have been deprived of their second dose.
The Parliament Secretariat had scheduled to administer the second dose of Covishield vaccines to lawmakers, parliamentary staff and parliamentary journalists Friday onwards.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Chairperson of the National Assembly, Vice-Chairperson, MPs of both the Houses, and all the staff of the private residences of the office bearers were scheduled to receive their second dose on Friday.
Likewise, all the staff of the Federal Parliament Secretariat, staff working at the International Conference Center in New Baneshwor were scheduled to get inoculated on Saturday.
On Sunday, the Parliament Secretariat announced that it had to halt the vaccination drive for the time being because they had run out of vaccines.
As elderly citizens have received their first dose but getting their second dose hangs in uncertainty, the families, relatives and close ones of lawmakers as well as families and relatives of the Federal Parliament Secretariat staff were found taking the second dose that was not meant for them.
The Parliament Secretariat had demanded 1,465 doses for the three-day inoculation drive of second dose, while 1,729 people got themselves vaccinated in just two days.
POLITICS OF OXYGEN
After 400 oxygen cylinders donated by the Chinese government arrived in Kathmandu last week, the Ministry of Health and Population had decided to distribute them to 13 hospitals in Kathmandu.
However, lawmakers from the ruling CPN-UML, taking advantage of their political influence, have started transporting oxygen cylinders to hospitals and isolation centers in their constituencies.
As a result, hospitals in Kathmandu, that were supposed to receive the oxygen cylinders as critically ill COVID patients pile up, have not received their share of the quota.
CPN-UML MPs ferried 27 oxygen cylinders, meant for Kathmandu hospitals, to Dang. MPs Shanta Chaudhary, Hirachandra KC took 10 oxygen cylinders each and whereas Ganga Chaudhary Satgauwa took seven oxygen cylinders to Dang from Kathmandu.
Shanta Chaudhary said, “We are people’s representatives and the general public is in need of oxygen cylinders. That is why we are taking healthcare kits, including cylinders, to our constituencies.”
According to her, the cylinders were provided to them by the Ministry of Health as per the demand form submitted by the concerned hospitals in Dang.
She, however, could not clarify which hospitals would get how many cylinders though they were supposedly being taken to be supplied to Rapti Institute of Health Sciences and Rapti Provincial Hospital.
Influential people getting their hands on oxygen cylinders does not ensure that the O2 will be supplied to the needy public in an unbiased manner.
Another MP Ganga Chaudhary, meanwhile, has handed over the cylinders that she took from Kathmandu at the COVID Isolation Center in Lamahi in Dang.
Stating that the health department had given her the oxygen cylinders as per the demand form submitted by the isolation center, she said, “I have all the evidences to prove that these cylinders are not for my personal use.”