PESHAWAR: The administration of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa had formally asked assistance from a Singapore-based institution to manage mosquito populations in the province and avoid vector-borne illness.
According to Nauman Wazir, a member of Pakistan's Senate, the venture was initiated at the suggestion of local experts who visited Singapore during the 2017 dengue outbreak, which claimed the lives of more than 70 people and impacted 50,000 more.
He added that Brazil and Singapore successfully applied the strategy using Wolbachia-infected insects to diminish mosquito populations biologically.
Nauman Wazir said, "We [KP government] are in contact with the World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Dengue Management in Singapore through our country's high commissioner for the introduction of a new biological method to reduce the population of mosquitoes, a major cause of dengue in the province,"
Further, Nauman Wazir explained that Singapore authorities had confirmed the representatives of the KP government that they would conduct a training initiative for relevant staff members in order to ensure the method's successful launch and execution, as well as assist local scientific experts in setting up the necessary facilities.
He further informed that the Singapore administration would not hand over the 'vector' (mosquito) that they had obtained from the University of Michigan in the United States to the provincial government.
Nevertheless, according to Wazir Nauman, he had also called an acquaintance at a Washington institution to assist him in obtaining the vector from the University of Michigan.