Foreign travel bans have been clamped on another nine officials at the Ministry of Health, including Health Ministry Secretary Janaka Sri Chandraguptha, over the scam involving the import of 22,500 substandard immunoglobulin vials.

These foreign travel bans were imposed by the Maligakanda Magistrate on a request made by the CID.

The CID informed Court that these officials knew well about the said scam and as a result there is a possibility of them going abroad to avoid the on-going Court proceedings.

Considering this, the Maligakanda Magistrate informed the Controller General of Immigration and Emigration to stop the said officials if they arrive at airport from abroad or with the intention to go abroad and inform it to the special Unit 01 of the CID.

Earlier, the owner of the company, which stands accused of importing substandard immunoglobulin vials and two top Health Ministry officials, who approved the importation were subject to a foreign travel ban by the Maligakanda Magistrate.

Meanwhile, Health Ministry Secretary Janaka Sri Chandragupta was expected to retire from State service on Saturday (18), informed Health Ministry sources revealed.

They said on Friday (17), that an Acting Secretary, from within the Health Ministry, was scheduled to oversee his duties from Monday (20), till such time that a Ministry Secretary was appointed.

Chandragupta, whose name has been embroiled in the controversial immunoglobulin IV scam, has allegedly not been given an extension of service as a result.

Informed sources said, that on Tuesday (14), Secretary Chandragupta had been instructed by Health Minister Dr. Ramesh Pathirana to place duties of the Medical Supplies Division (MSD) under the direct supervision of the Director General Health Services (DGHS), Dr. Asela Gunawardena with immediate effect.

Meanwhile, a former Director General of Health Service (DGHS) Dr. Palitha Mahipala was allegedly tipped to be the next Health Secretary.

Dr. Mahipala, who is currently serving in a high-ranking position of the World Health Organisation (WHO) would have to resign from his post prior to taking up office as the Secretary of Health. Sources said, he is set to assume the latter position before 10 December 2023.



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