Govt transfers Health Secretary amid mask scam
Staff Reporter :
The government has transferred Md Ashadul Islam, secretary to the Health Services Division, amid questions over the handling of the mask scam during the ongoing coronavirus crisis.
Ashadul has been attached to the Planning Division with Abdul Mannan, chairman of the Land Reform Board, replacing him in the Health Services Division, the public administration ministry said in a notice on Thursday.
Mannan had earlier served as the divisional commissioner of Chattogram.
Mannan had earlier served as the divisional commissioner of Chattogram. The BCS eighth batch officer was appointed chairman to the Land Reform Board on Jan 27 this year.
The director of the Central Medical Stores Depot or CMSD has also been replaced amid the scandalous handling of N95 masks.
The use of N95 masks is crucial in treating COVID-19 patients and testing samples, according to the health directorate's personal protective equipment guidelines.
JMI Group, a Bangladeshi company producing medical equipment certified by the DGHS, has been supplying gloves, sanitisers and masks to the CMSD.
The company had tried to wash its hands of the scam involving 20,600 pieces of ordinary mask packed as N95 face masks for government hospitals when the doctors started complaining at the end of March.
The masks from the products at development stage were 'mistakenly' included with the supplied goods, the company had said in a letter to the Central Medical Stores Depot or CMSD, the government agency that had distributed the masks.
It had sought "to be spared from the liabilities of the inadvertent mistake" by taking back the supplied masks. The CMSD then threatened to sue the media over news and said the matter "should have ended after JMI's explanation".