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MPs to quiz health minister

NEWLY-APPOINTED Health Minister Dr Nazar Al Baharna will be summoned to a probe in parliament over what MPs described as 'irregularities' at Salmaniya Medical Complex (SMC).

MPs yesterday unanimously voted in favour of questioning the minister behind closed doors at the services committee on claims that people were being denied entry into SMC, some being disallowed treatment and some health officials backing terrorist moves.

The probe request was submitted by parliament public utilities and environment affairs committee vice-chairman and Independent Bloc co-ordinator Hassan Al Dossary and MPs Abdulhaleem Murad, Adnan Al Malki, Abdulrahman Bumajeed and Ali Zayed.

It comes after the five MPs have set a hotline to record recent complaints against officials at the hospital.

The summon will be informed to Dr Al Baharna by Minister of State for Shura Council and Parliament Affairs, as a date will be set by the end of the week.

Complaints

Mr Murad said that complaints ranged from people being prevented from entering the hospital and treatment and services being delayed because the staff was sitting outside in the car park.

He said that the hospital has been under siege by anti-government protesters, who have set up tents in the car parks for the past month since the turmoil started in Bahrain.

"We can't stand to watch the health sector turning one-sided rather than helping people without discrimination," said Mr Murad.

"But this is not the case at the hospital as there have been cases where some people were turned back as medical staff refused to provide them with treatment, while the same staff treated others," he said.

"The SMC has been turned into a settlement for anti-government protesters since the incidents have started and the minister has done nothing to clear the place."

"There are pictures of ambulances being used to transport weapons across the country to help terrorist acts and this is another issue that the minister has kept a blind eye to," he said.



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