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Children’s liver transplantation to start at PKLI by June, SC told

LAHORE: Punjab Health Minister Yasmeen Rashid on Saturday informed the Supreme Court that liver transplantation of children will start from June at the Pakistan Liver and Kidney Research Institute (PKLI), ARY News reported.

Hearing a suo motu case against irregularities and misappropriation of funds at the PKLI at the top court’s Lahore Registry, a two-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar remarked that the mega project was built but there were no facility for liver transplantation for children.

The minister responded that the Cabinet had legislated on the issue. A board of governor has also been constituted for the PKLI, she added.

We want the government to run the hospital, instead of handing it over to a trust, responded the chief justice. He stated that it was the matter of the lives of people, “hence we want to help out.”

The court asked the minister not to include members of the previous trust in the newly-formed board of governors.

According to a report of the anti-corruption department, consultant and the staff of PKLI were heavily paid for the project but no work was done.

It said the administration did not penalize contractor for delay in initiation of work. The national kitty suffered losses due to negligence of the administration, the report points out.

Lawyer of the PKLI’s former administration claimed that the report had many mistakes. “A period should be given so we could file the reply,” he requested.

On Dec 31, the apex court had referred the matter to an anti-corruption court, with instructions to summon those responsible and submit a report within 10 days.

The apex court also directed lawyers of the former PKLI administration to file their reply by January 16.

The institution came under fire in March after comparisons were drawn between salaries and perks of doctors who worked at the other government hospitals and those at the PKLI. The CJP had expressed anger at the gap between their salaries.

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