Thursday October 28, 2021

PAC orders probe into medical equipment purchase anomalies

October 14, 2021

PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Wednesday directed the Health Department to hold departmental inquiry into the alleged irregularities in the purchase of medical equipment for hospitals in Charsadda, Timergara and Maulvi Amir Shah Hospital in Peshawar.

The committee in its meeting chaired by PAC Acting Chairman, MPA Idrees Khan reviewed audit paras of the financial year 2014-15 and 2013-14. It found that purchase was made in violation of the set policies.

There was objection in the audit paras in the purchase of dialysis machines for District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospital Charsadda in 2014-15, laundry unit for Maulvi Amir Shah Hospital, Peshawar and medical equipment by DHO Office Timergara, Lower Dir, for different hospitals in the district during financial year 2013-14 as the set rules were violated.

The committee directed the Health Department to devise a policy for purchase and submit the report with the PAC. The acting chairman directed for holding an inquiry into three paras which mentioned the irregularities and recover the amount while fixing the responsibility.

The committee members Inayatullah Khan, Babar Salim Swati, Dr Asia Asad, Salahuddin Khan and Jamshed Mohmand debated the audit paras while Dr Farooq Jamil, special secretary health, defended the department.

Officers from Law, Finance and Audit departments attended the meeting besides PAC secretary Amjad Ali Khan and the relevant Medical Superintendents.

The committee settled the three audit paras about the Medical Teaching Institute in Bannu. However, the PAC directed for inquiry into another audit para of the same hospital through a joint committee consisting of officers from the Finance, Law, Health, Audit and PAC section of the assembly. The committee will fix the responsibility and submit its report within one month.

According to the audit para in fiscal year 2013-14 the government had released a fund of Rs 18 million to the said hospital for the medicines and medical facilities for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).

Out of the same amount Rs 6.3 million were spent on medicines and other health facilities while the remaining amount was spent on the hospital renovation and painting, etc. The PAC members observed that spending the money on renovation instead of the IDPs treatment was unjustified. They also found the documents in support of the spending incomplete, misleading and directed a probe into the matter.

The committee directed Medical Superintendent of Khalifa Gul Nawaz Hospital, Bannu, for inquiry into an audit para about payment to gas cylinder suppliers and irregularities in purchase of furniture in 2014-15.

The committee offered fateha for the departed soul of the nuclear scientist, Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan.