BATTAGRAM: As many as 30 employees of the Battagram Health Department were terminated after health authorities declared their hiring procedure against the rules and their professional education credentials fake.
The sacked employees have, however, termed the decision ‘political victimisation’ and threatened agitation against the department.
An official of the Battagram District Health Office told The Express Tribune on Sunday that from July to October 2013, the district health department hired over 75 employees in various cadres. However, during the verification process, the diplomas of six Expanded Programme on Immunisation technicians, and one laboratory, one dental, one medical and one surgical technician were found to be counterfeit.
Furthermore, the verification revealed that 20 other employees including gardeners, sweepers and watchmen were hired in violation of rules. The termination letter issued to these employees states that the posts of these Class-IV staffers were filled without being publicised properly in newspapers.
The health office staffer added the 30 employees were issued termination letters on July 3.
Amjad Khan, one of the sacked employees, confirmed he as well as nine paramedics and 20 Class-IV employees had received termination letters.
“The hiring was done after a test and interview and our names were published on the merit list by the District Selection Committee headed by then district health officer (DHO),” claimed Khan.
“I have a laboratory technician diploma from National Institute of Health (NIH) Islamabad and was hired on the basis of the said qualification, but the verification was obtained from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) Medical Faculty Peshawar which has no record of professionals who obtain diplomas from other provinces,” explained Khan.
He contested the health department’s claim that the terminated employees have fake professional credentials. “Carrying out the verification of only 10 paramedics and 20 Class-IV employees out of the 75 who were hired is indicative of political victimisation,” he said.
Khan claimed the termination letter was issued on the basis of political vendetta.
Amraiz Khan, a sacked dental technician, said the 30 employees would protest against the health department from Monday (today) onwards and approach the court as well.
He also claimed that the educational credentials of all dismissed employees were genuine and accused the DHO of playing into the hands of some political leaders who want to see their political rivals punished.
DHO Dr Mushtaq Khan could not be reached despite repeated attempts.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 7th, 2014.