Kidney research scientist decries conflict of interest on the part of some officials

By Don Asoka Wijewardena

CKD Research Scientist Dr. Channa Jayasumana yesterday said high ranking state officials and academics should never be permitted to hold posts in food and agrochemical companies.

Dr. Jayasumana said a group of university academics had decided to meet President Maithripala Sirisena to apprise him of the negative impact of allowing government officials to work at private food and agrochemical firms. When national issues such as food poisoning or harmful ingredients of food surfaced those officials tended to turn a blind eye on the issues, Dr. Jayasumana said.

Though the products of the companies were harmful to the humans, the government sector officials appointed to the companies as directors or advisers were unable to follow the dictates of conscience due to company policies and conflict of interest.

It was the responsibility of the government to look into the issue. Unless the government took action to ban such obvious conflict of interest, the culprits in the Food and the Agrochemical industries could never be punished.


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