KARACHI (FEBRUARY 03): Sindh Minister for Information and Labor Saeed Ghani has said that Education and Health had always been at the top of the PPP's Sindh government's priorities. The provincial Minister for Information said that, that was why whenever the people of Sindh voted for Pakistan Peoples Party to serve them, it spent exclusively in these two important sectors. He said this while speaking as chief guest at the inauguration ceremony of Government Secondary School, constructed in collaboration with the United States Agency for International Development in Yousaf Goth, Surjani Town on Monday. Saeed Ghani said that just as the people of the USAID, the parents, the teachers and the students were happy for becoming part of this important event, he was too extremely happy to be here in this inauguration ceremony. The Provincial Information Minister while acknowledging the efforts of the United States Agency for International Development said that the Agency was helping the Sindh government immensely under the Sindh Basic Education Program in improving not only the infrastructure or the condition of the schools, but also the quality and the standard of education in these schools throughout the province. He told the audience that the USAID was spending $ 155 million in this regard while the Sindh government was paying for the remaining costs. Saeed Ghani said there were 112 schools which were being refurbished with the help of USAID and hoped that by next year, all these schools would be fully functional. In addition, the provincial Minister for Information informed that there were nine thousand schools across the province which had been identified by the Sindh government for refurbishment and he hoped that all these schools would also be fully functional by next year. Appreciating the Sindh Government's Public Private Partnership Initiative, Saeed Ghani said that it was a milestone because it had not only brought a lot of improvement in Health and Education sector, but also in the infrastructure and development of various projects meant for improving the living standard of the people. He told that that the Sindh province had been rated among the top most provinces of the region, where many projects had been successfully completed under the Public Private Partnership initiative. Thar Coal Project was one of the best examples of the projects completed under a Public Private Partnership initiative, the Minister added. Saeed Ghani said that just like saving a life was like saving humanity, educating a child was like educating a generation. Addressing the children of the school, Saeed Ghani said that they should consider themselves extremely lucky to be here, as he told that he never in his life could get the this kind of opportunity for receiving standard education, or the school like this one to study. Provincial Information Minister told the children that they should work hard sincerely, and after that there was no doubt that one day any of the children sitting there listening to him would be standing at the place where he stood today addressing them. Addressing the teachers, he said that they should fulfill their basic responsibility in a sincere manner, and adding that, if they did so, they would not have to protest for the approval of their demands. Saeed Ghani said Thar teachers should treat their students like they treated their own children. The provincial minister for information said that he believed that what we spent on our children and on education today was basically what we were being spending on our future. He said that all basic facilities for the children would be ensured in all schools of Sindh, besides, he said that all unneeded schools would be closed.

Saeed Ghani said that if good and high quality education would be provided in the public schools then the business of the private school would automatically come to an end. Addressing the inauguration ceremony, USAID's Mission Director Julie Koenen said she was proud to attend this event. She said she couldn't express her happiness in words. At the end of the ceremony, schoolchildren performed tableau and cultural dances.

Meanwhile, Provincial Minister for Information and Labor Saeed Ghani also participated in the prize distribution ceremony of a school being run by the Workers' Welfare Board and distributed complimentary prizes to the successful students. Congratulating the successful students and addressing the prize distribution ceremony the Minister of Information and Labor said that Sindh government would always ensure the availability of all the basic facilities for children in the schools being run by the Workers' Welfare Board. He told the children to work hard and not only make a name for their parents but also their country.

Talking to journalists after the ceremony, Saeed said that the present government if PTI had given the people nothing but inflation and unemployment. According to statistics, the inflation in January had increased more than what it was in the month of December, provincial minister of information said. He said that the government of the PTI was the only government which had made it difficult for people perform Pilgrimage. Saeed Ghani said that nothing had left including gas, electricity and medicines the price of which had not been increased manifold. Provincial Minister for Information said that because of this government's failed policies, everyone was suffering immensely. Responding to a question, Saeed Ghani said that their concerns about the Inspector General of Police, Sindh were being justified. He had links with the political parties of the opposition, he added.

HANDOUT NO. (0093)