OpEd / Sarcasm: Amidst exquisite trade relations between Pakistan and China which include trading donkeys, human hair, brides, underwear masks, China is now further boosting ties with Pakistan and is reportedly keen to conduct clinical trials of COVID-19 vaccine on some ginny pigs in the Islamic Republic.
The National Institute of Health (NIH) in the capital city of Pakistan, Islamabad recently received an offer from China Sinopharm International Corporation that asked for collaboration on conducting clinical trials of a recently developed inactivated COVID-19 vaccine by the Chinese corporation, first shared by Pakistani Saadia Afzaal on her television program and her twitter handle.
BIG BREAKING!! EXCLUSIVE!!
China has developed COVID-19 vaccine and Pakistan is going to receive it pretty SOON making Pakistan one of the first few countries in the world to launch COVID-19 vaccine! NIH Exectuive Director Gen. Aamer Ikram confirms!! pic.twitter.com/wOEOrny403
— Saadia Afzaal (@SaadiaAfzaal) April 22, 2020
The letter of invitation was sent to NIH Executive Director Maj Gen Dr. Aamer Ikram by the general manager of China Sinopharm International Corp, Li Can. The Nation reports that ED NIH Maj Gen Aamer Ikram had agreed and said that “we will be part of the clinical trial with China.”
Pakistan’s Infamous Trade Relations With China
In the previous years, Pakistan garnered unwanted attention for having rather unusual deals with China which not only included exporting millions of donkeys to its brotherly neighbour but, over 100,000 kilograms of human hair.
In Pakistan, due to the heightened demand for the hide in China over the last few years, hundreds of thousands of donkeys were illegally and brutally slaughtered across the country. While the hide was smuggled to China, donkey meat was sold in the market.
Pakistan has the world’s third-largest population of donkeys with more than 5 million animals. In a bid to boost the country’s exports, the livestock department of Pakistan had announced that it will develop special donkey farms for China, a report that drew wide hilarious reactions from netizens.
Pakistan also exported over 100,000 kg of human hair to China. The Ministry of Commerce and Textile informed the National Assembly that 105,461 kg of human hair was transported to China in the last five years.
The requirement for human hair developed in China due to the expansion of the makeup industry. The other reason for the rise in the export of human hair is that there is a trend for wearing wigs for fashion and ally Pakistan again came into the picture and gratefully assisted.
In the situation of the current pandemic, with more than ten thousand, Pakistan is gradually reaching its saturation point with inadequate health facilities. China, in an attempt to help the crippling state of Pakistan, had offered to send N95 masks and test kits, earlier this month.
However, much to Pakistan’s dismay and embarrassing news, there were also reports that China was allegedly sending masks made of underwear to Pakistan. A local Pakistani news channel reported the news and said that Beijing had agreed to export good quality masks and yet, the masks they sent were allegedly made of underwear.
China promised to send top quality N-95 masks to Pakistan. When the consignment landed, Pakistanis found that China had sent masks made of underwear.
— Major Gaurav Arya (Retd) (@majorgauravarya) April 4, 2020
Reporting the news, the anchor of the Pakistani channel said, “China ne chuna laga diya” (China has fooled us) and further notified that the Sindh provincial government sent the masks to hospitals without checking.
Coming back on clinical trials, former secretary biological drugs of DRAP — Dr. Obaid Ali has warned that disclosure of preclinical data to demonstrate the safety of human trials should be the top priority. He said that preclinical and clinical risk mitigation policies need to be in place, so that those registered in the clinical trials may not experience any potential extreme hazard that can be avoided.
OpEd Sarcasm By Ms. Sharma, New Delhi.