President Dr Arif Alvi has said he doesn’t know who is responsible for the wheat crisis in the country, but he should have known about it.
According to Geo, the president on Monday arrived at National Institute of Child Health (NICH) on a surprise visit along with his wife Sameena Alvi. The two were welcomed and given a tour of the hospital by Executive Director Dr Jamal Raza.
Speaking to journalists later, the president said he was visiting the hospital on Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan’s advice. “It is regrettable how patients have no other choice but to share beds for treatment and their families are being sent to buy medicines from outside the hospital,” he reportedly said.
When asked about the condition of hospitals and the government’s apparent inability to bring relief to the masses, President Alvi said the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) was unaware of the economic conditions while making its promises ahead of 2018’s general election.
To a question about the persisting wheat crisis across the country, the president said he had no idea who was to be held responsible for it. “But I should have known,” he added.
The PTI government was first warned of the ongoing wheat crisis in September last year when several high-ranking officials had suggested appropriate measures. The government had ignored the warning.
Initially, the crisis appeared when Sindh decided not to procure wheat because different officials were facing corruption probes on account of its procurement. Meanwhile, Punjab had imposed a ban on inter-provincial movement of wheat.
Keeping in view the situation, profiteers and hoarders started exploiting the situation and stock piling wheat.
The federal government has refused to take any responsibility for the crisis, saying it is the domain of the provinces to procure wheat.