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Dec 3, 2009

More testimonies at K.H.M.H. Commission of Inquiry

Story PictureTurning to the ongoing Commission of Inquiry, which resumed today after a two-day break. The commission was established following allegations made by doctors and nurses at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital’s on scandalous procurements of pharmaceutical and medical supplies. First up to testify today was Chief Pharmacist with the Ministry of Health, Sharon Sanchez Anderson. Anderson explained the tendering and procurement processes when dealing with supplies. But there were startling revelations. On Monday Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Health, Doctor Peter Allen, testified that the Tenders Committee had approved over ninety percent of the bids. But today Anderson, who was also on the Tenders Committee, said that the Committee was not consulted. Meanwhile, Administrator of Central Medical Stores, Lisa Green, explained how the process worked when supplies are released from the Central Medical Stores in Ladyville to the K.H.M.H. The third person to offer testimony was Doctor George Gough who spoke of his experience when he served for two consecutive terms on the Tenders Committee.

Lisa Green, Administrator, Central Medical Stores
“They have their respective time that they’re supposed to submit their requisition. However, they may submit it before the time so they would submit at least by the fifteenth of each month for them to get on the fourth week. If it’s sent before and it’s not an emergency, we will not honor it until it is time for their—until their requisition is due. So if they would feel that we are not honoring, then they would go out and purchase. But it in actual fact, it’s not their time to deliver and also, if it’s an emergency, the procedure is they would call and inform us we have sent a requisition, we don’t have on hand, can you please help us. We would honor and they would also verify on the system to see what is their balance at the time. However, there is an issue with the system, the BHI, whereby professionals informed us that it does not have an accurate balance so we cannot go by it at all times.”

Dr. George Gough, former Tenders Committee Member
“We were coming from a point where in the past, there were four, five companies participating in the tenders, to a recent part before 2007-2008 that there was no Tender Committee which was one or two companies providing all the pharmaceuticals, to a point where we opened a transparent process where twenty-seven to twenty companies were allowed, including the ones in the past to participate in the tender. So we went through the full process that we had put in our terms of reference that we had developed within the Ministry of Health for the tender committee. And from there we went on to go through these values that we had put on ourselves to due process within the tender committee and we selected to the best of our knowledge within the groups, based on these five premises that I have mentioned, and we came up with these names, these companies, these products and we signed off on them.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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