Message from the President June 2013

A regional consultation on eradication of polio in the light of Islamic principles was held on 5-6th June 2013 in Islamabad, Pakistan. It was jointly hosted by Islamic International University, Al Azhar University, Cairo and WHO (World Health Organization). FIMA was represented in this meeting by our Secretary General Dr. Tanveer Zubairi, who also attended the first consultation of Muslim scholars held in Cairo in March 2013.

The Global Polio Eradication Initiative, launched by the health ministers of the Member States of the World Health Organization in 1988, has been successful in stopping the transmission of this crippling disease in all but three countries of the world: Pakistan, Afghanistan and Somalia in EMRO and Nigeria in AFRO regions of WHO. All other countries have stopped indigenous wild poliovirus transmission.

The four remaining countries face a complex web of increasing security challenges and insurgency which are exploiting religious sentiment and fragile community trust to create a climate of fear. Ultimately, this results in fewer children being vaccinated and more cases of polio-paralysis.

The medical fraternity in Muslim countries has been in the forefront of this historic global effort. From general practitioners to the professors of pediatrics and neurology have engaged in establishing a robust AFP surveillance system to keep track of the wild poliovirus, ensure a strong active surveillance is maintained in the major health facilities and for promotion to providing training and orientation to the hospital staff, young doctors and medical students.

Also, the eminent Islamic scholars from all schools of thought have been issuing edicts (Fatwa) in support of polio immunization in the light of Islamic teachings. OIC has been leading the efforts to sustain highest level political support within its member countries. Strong resolutions supporting polio immunization have been passed in almost all OIC conferences.

FIMA has already assured the WHO authorities and all the concerned at regional and local levels of its best possible help and support from all the 42 FIMA member bodies. FIMA has a firm commitment to honor the Millennium Development Goals 2015, as per Kuala Lumpur declaration deliberations which was signed on 14th September 2012 in Kuala Lumpur by all the IMAs and bodies. FIMA and WHO shares the common cause of eradicate the illness and disease of any kind from the surface of the earth.

There is a need to propagate the Fatwas (Edicts) issued by Muslim Scholars and doctors and these have to be widely circulated and Myths attached to harmful effects of vaccination including side effects like sterility and vaccines containing haram and harmful ingredients may be refuted in public. I urge the leadership of IMAs in these four Muslim countries to come forward and play their role in the ongoing effort to eradicate this disease and be a part of the final round of the organized global effort to save our future generation from this lethal, crippling and paralyzing disease.



Dr. Parvaiz Malik
President FIMA 2009-2013

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