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Health workers besiege EDO’s office

Health workers besiege EDO’s office

GUJRAT: The row between allied health workers and Executive District Officer (EDO) Dr Ijaz Haider intensified on Friday morning when the workers besieged his office after he allegedly hurled abuses at one of his subordinates.

The EDO (health) had transferred three staffers on Thursday one of whom arrived at the office on Friday that triggered an argument. The EDO locked his office and called in police that got him out of the building under protection.

The protesting workers locked the district health department and demanded immediate transfer of the EDO in light of the recommendations and findings of a three-member inquiry committee probing allegations against the officer.




District Coordination Officer (DCO) Liaquat Ali Chattha intervened and reinstated three staffers that the EDO had transferred as well as sent Dr Haider on a three-day leave. The EDO is scheduled to appear in a Faisalabad anti-corruption court in a case registered against him in Chiniot.

Sources said the Gujrat chapter of Pakistan Medical Association (PMA) had jumped in the issue and was pressing the DCO not to surrender the EDO’s services under pressure from the workers as it could aggravate the situation.

The DCO pacified health workers by forwarding the inquiry report to the health secretary for further action, but did not surrender the services as per the inquiry committee’s report.

An official of the protesting workers association said the provincial chapter of allied health workers had been approached to lodge a case with the health secretary.

VACANCY: The post of district police officer (DPO) has been lying vacant since ruling lawmakers from Gujrat allegedly got Rai Ijaz Ahmed transferred on April 16.

After suspension of the Sialkot DPO in the wake of Daska firing incident, Ahmed has been entrusted by the provincial government with the challenging post in Sialkot. But Gujrat could not be assigned any officer on the post.

Superintendent of Police (SP) Kamran Mumtaz, handling the headquarters, has been serving as acting Gujrat DPO for six weeks and as SP (investigation) after the retirement of Mian Riaz three weeks ago. Mumtaz is now handling three posts.

The chief minister had interviewed at least three senior superintendent of police-rank officers, including Azhar Akram, Afzal Butt and Kashif Kanju, three weeks ago for posting as the Gujrat DPO. But so far no one had been selected.

Published in Dawn, May 30th, 2015

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