Saudi Health Minister Sacks Workers Over Corruption


He did not give details about the activities of the employees, but said his ministry was pursuing others to get rid of all suspicious activities in the ministry and dismiss anyone who violates the law.

Al Manie said his ministry would announce the names of all employees fired because of involvement in administrative corruption. He explained that the aim of publishing names was ‘not to defame them’ but it was rather aimed at sending a message to other people that they would not go unpunished if they did the same.

Al Manie is the first Saudi official to publicly announce that a ministry was firing a number of employees on charges of corruption after the kingdom approved a national strategy to combat corruption last month.

On February 19, the Council of Ministers decided to facilitate administrative procedures and question dishonest officials, irrespective of their positions, as part of a major move to root out all forms of corruption in the country.

Al Manie had earlier announced that his ministry had fired three foreign employees in the ministry.

According to him, foreign workers fired on February 26 were involved in stealing vaccines from public health centres and selling them to private clinics.

He said within the next few months his ministry would directly supervise a new medical college, which will be located in the King Fahd Medical City premises north of Riyadh. It will not operate under the umbrella of the Ministry of Higher Education.

“There is a royal decree which authorises the Minister of Higher Education to recognise the medical university,” Al Manie said during an inspection visit to the university’s location.

He did not explain how the medical college would operate or the procedures for accepting students, but said that the medical college would be unique in the Middle East region in terms of facilities and academic programmes. He added that it was recognised internationally.

Al Manie said that professors would be appointed and students admitted to the new medical college from June 16. He said the new college would be able to accommodate more than 200 students.

The contractor will complete the college building by September. Saying that there was “an acute shortage of Saudi doctors”, he hoped that the new college would help more Saudi students to graduate in medical sciences.

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