The Health Ministry will adhere to the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee’s (PAC) recommendations made in their report on the management of Covid-19 that was tabled in Parliament recently.
Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa said the ministry acknowledges the report and will take action on areas specifically on procurement process.
“We will ensure that a more stern approach is taken to ensure that procurement processes … even though it is during an emergency period, it has to follow through with the right procedures. That’s our stand,” Dr Zaliha told a press conference at the Parliament building here today.
She was commenting on the recent PAC report that revealed the cause of inoperable Covid-19 ventilators, the government’s losses incurred from expired Covid-19 vaccines, and excess of personal protective equipment (PPE).
In the PAC report, the committee through their probes found that no parties could be held accountable for the 104 unusable ventilators from 136 procured for Covid-19 patients.
The PAC said this happened due to an absence of a written agreement between the Health Ministry and supplier Pharmaniaga Logistics Sdn Bhd (PLSB).
According to the PAC report, no contract was drawn up between the Health Ministry and PLSB regarding the procurement of ventilators and the ministry’s legal adviser was not consulted during the process of preparing the PLSB appointment letter.
The PAC also found that the problem with all the ventilators is that the plugs of the ventilators received — Type A — were different from the electrical outlets used in Malaysia, which is Type G.
As for the expired vaccines, the PAC report found that the low take-up on the vaccines especially booster shots and late arrival of vaccine doses into the country, was the cause of excess vaccines eventually leading to their expiry.
The PAC reported the expiry of 8.5 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines as of June 15, 2023, worth RM505 million. – Malaymail