Health Ministry bureaucracy fires back at Minister

By Ajith Alahakoon

A deputy director of the Health Ministry yesterday said high ranking public officers serving at that institution were in an embarrassing situation, unable to face the public due to virulent attacks made by the Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena on them.

The bigwigs at the Health Ministry expressed their displeasure at Sirisena telling the media that though there were many directors general and deputy directors general, no one attended a function held at Galle recently.

The deputy director who spoke on condition of anonymity said, "What took place in Galle was a foundation laying ceremony and we were not prepared to go behind politicians as we are not sycophants." He added that most of the senior officials at the Health Ministry were not political appointees and there was no need for them to go behind politicians.

The Minister had even accused doctors in his ministry of being rogues who wanted to have everything free for themselves, the official said. "Maithripala Sirisena assumed duties as Health Minister four years ago and right along he has been castigating his officials as rogues," he added.

He said the minister had accused the officials of being rogues but no action had been taken against anyone except a clerk attached to the Supplies Division during the last four years.


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