RAWALPINDI: The record of a project at Benazir Bhutto Hospital (BBH) worth Rs242.48 million was found missing during an audit of the hospital’s accounts.
During the audit of the BBH under the administrative control of the Rawalpindi Medical University (RMU) for the financial year 2015-16, the auditors found the record of ‘Establishment of additional 25-bed surgical and allied facilities for emergency department’ missing.
The provincial government had provided Rs283.520 million to the hospital under the annual development programme (ADP). But the hospital administration could produce vouchers for Rs41.039 million for the audit scrutiny while vouchers for Rs242.48 million were missing.
The auditors made several written and verbal requests and met the concerned officials to produce the vouchers but to no avail.
The audit team also found irregularities in the award of the contract for the construction work.
The audit team recommended disciplinary action against the officials concerned for hindering the functions of the auditor general regarding inspection of accounts.
A senior official of the BBH told Dawn that the medical superintendent of the hospital had been asked by the health department to take action against the relevant officials and check the missing record of the Rs283 million project.
He said the medical superintendent suspended the accountant and launched an inquiry under the Punjab Employees efficiency, disciplinary and accountability Act 2006.
“Former medical superintendent Dr Asif Qadir Mir had been approached and he made it clear that he was not responsible for the record as it was maintained by the RMU,” he said.
After this, the medical superintendent wrote a letter to Rawalpindi Medical University Vice Chancellor Dr Mohammad Umer about the missing record.
He said Dr Ather Tehsin being the central coordinator for the ADP had also been approached for the provision of relevant information. However, he said, the record was not found and the BBH administration informed the health department about it.
The matter would be taken up in the Punjab Planning and Development Department next month and the provincial health secretary would present his report, he added.
When contacted, Dr Ather Tehsin, the central coordinator for the ADP, said the record would be produced soon. He said the audit team made an objection about the missing record but the administration would provide them the details of expenditures.
BBH Medical Superintendent Dr Tariq Niazi said he was not aware of the matter as it had occurred before he joined the office. However, he admitted that the record was not available.
Published in Dawn, January 4th, 2019
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