ABBOTTABAD: The acting board of governors of the Ayub Medical Institution (AMI), notified towards the end of June, has apparently taken a number of key decisions including appointments, promotions, development work, financial management and renovation in the little time it has been in charge.
Based on copies (available with The Express Tribune) of minutes of the two meetings, which the new board has convened since being notified by the caretaker Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) chief minister on June 29, a number of decisions were taken.
These include the appointment of a new dean, a medical director and hospital director while apparently ignoring merit and seniority and at times even bypassing the selection criteria listed under the Medical Teaching Institution (MTI) Reforms Act 2015.
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Item four of minutes for the meeting held on July 7, the BoG decided to change the selection criteria for appointing the dean. It decided to constitute a three-member sub-committee to revisit the criteria and submit its report.
This committee includes Muhammad Ayub, Dr Aftab Rabani and Dr Khursheed Khattak.
Similarly, another committee was formed to revisit the inquiries of the provincial inspection team (PIT) and the divisional monitoring teams. This team comprises BoG members Javed Turk, Dr Aftab Rabbani, Dr Khursheed Khattak and Ayaz Jadoon.
The multiple committees constituted by the BoG comprising members of the board is contrary to Section 6 (5) of the MTI Act 2015. The section states: “No member, except specifically stated in the text, shall chair or be a member of a subordinate committee or sub-committee, to ensure unbiased oversight”.
Moreover, the board decided to enhance the house jobs seats under the employment daughter or son quota. They also increased the monthly stipend to Rs,20,000 per month.
The board also created a post of project director civil works in the institution even though the PIT had already objected to construction and maintenance work on a department of the Ayub teaching hospital.
Moreover, the interim BoG approved 204 temporary posts of class IV and information technology (IT) staff for six months including IT personnel, security guards, wards boys, sweepers, lift operators and plumbers.
The board also agreed to appoint 100 charge nurses, six Phlebotomists, and 16 other posts for other departments.
They also approved the health professional allowance (HPA) for 17 doctors at a rate of Rs56,000 per month. The doctors had been working as DDMS.
“The financial implication of the arrears with effect from January 2016 to April 2018 is calculated as Rs5.31 million,” the minutes stated.
HPA for 29 pharmacists, biochemists, physiotherapists and senior pharmacists were also approved at a rate of Rs10,000 per month, or an annual cost of Rs3.48 million per annum to the institution.
The BoG also approved the renovation and construction work in the hospital worth Rs115 million rupees. This task was assigned to the acting hospital administration.
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These measures have caused the senior faculty to raise their eyebrows with some asking questions of credibility of the interim board which has allegedly changed the scrutiny committee to accommodate some blue-eyed people on various vacant posts.
One such example was the appointment of assistant professors. One was appointed to the accidents and emergency department while the other was appointed to the orthopaedic department completely violating the criteria.
The academic council records for July 26 show that the prerequisite of presenting their cases before the academic council was not fulfilled.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 9th, 2018.