DNT president promises healthcare as top priority in the east

Health is DrukNyamrupTshogpa’s (DNT) top priority among others for the country, according to the DNT president LotayTshering during his campaign at Kanglung and Rangjung in Trashigang earlier this week.

During his campaign in Trashigang, the president said health is the reason why he joined politics.

The president said that DNT was concerned about inequities in healthcare across the country and the party promises equal access to quality specialist services for all the people.

He said that the party pledges to upgrade district hospitals with specialist services and upgrade medical care in BHUs and make specialist services available in the gewogs. “We would ensure access to specialist services like endoscopy, ultrasound and blood test at gewog levels.”

LotayTshering promised that his party would narrow the gap between the rich and poor. “The main portal to the gap is health care service in the country among others. Strengthening health care service at the gewog level, making it accessible to the rural people without having to travel far and incurring expenditure is one of the visions of DNT.”

The party president said that more than 60% of the country’s population avail the services from BHUs. “Upgrading and strengthening specialist services in BHUs will benefit the people at large.”

The president said that if DNT is elected, the party would extend the six-month maternity leave for women in private sectors and corporations like the maternity leave for the women in civil service which the previous government initiated.

He also pledged to extend similar services to women in rural areas by introducing allowance that would match daily wage rate for women in rural areas during child birth until the baby is six months old. “Introducing and extending such services will further narrow the gap between the children of civil servants and those of rural women.”

He said that if this opportunity is not provided, after 10 to 15 years, children of civil servants will be much healthier and brighter than those of rural women.

The second priority that DNT pledged if elected was to review the class X cut-off point to enable financially challenged students to continue their education. The president also pledged to review central schools to make it better.

Meanwhile, apart from promising better health and education, the president said DNT will establish a dedicated agency to manage water distribution if elected.

He said that since water is important for agriculture, the party would explore conversion of wet land and dry land, where irrigation water is unavailable and work towards protecting watersheds and sources to sustain water supply.

LotayTshering said if DNT formed the government, apart from establishing offices in 47 constituencies for the elected assembly representatives, DNT would also establish tshogpa office in chiwogs to assist people availing public services.

Choki, 62 from Kanglung said this pledge would benefit the people especially the rural people. “If such services are established it will make it easier for the rural people to avail services as well as resolve their issues.”

Responding to a question from the public on employment opportunities, the president said if DNT formed the government they would establish an employment and livelihood corporation to address the country’s unemployment issue.

Additionally, president also pledged to support private sector and to make agriculture attractive for livelihood and employment.

Meanwhile, the party has campaigned in nine dzongkhags, 14 constituencies and more than 17 gatherings so far.

Jigme Wangchen from Trashigang