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Fraudulent IVIG import: MSD top brass including Director arrested

Fraudulent IVIG import: MSD top brass including Director arrested

20 Nov 2023 | BY Buddhika Samaraweera

  • Civil society group demands arrest of Keheliya


The Criminal Investigations Department (CID) has arrested four high ranking officials including the  Ministry of Health Director of the Medical Supplies Division (MSD) Dr. Kapila Wickramanayake over the alleged importing of substandard human intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) vials.

Accordingly, MSD Assistant Director Dr. Wickramanayake, Accountant (Supplies) Shanthi Soloman, Niran Dhananjaya and the Stock Controller/Pharmacist Sujith Kumara were arrested in relation to the incident, Police Media Spokesman, Senior Superintendent of Police and attorney Nihal Thalduwa said while speaking to The Daily Morning yesterday (20).

A batch of human IVIG had been supplied to the health sector using forged documents. The Ministry was not available for further comment.

While the said suspects had been arrested by the CID, a group of civil activists, including Dr. Ajantha Perera, had visited the CID yesterday to request it (CID) to take action against the incumbent Minister of Environment, Keheliya Rambukwella, who was the Health Minister at the time of the incident in question. One civil activist among the group was arrested by the Police officers at that time.

The batch of IVIG in question had been suspended from use following the revelation that the local supplier named Isolez Biotech Pharma AG (Pvt.) Ltd. had imported it by submitting forged documents for Customs clearing. It was also reported that the said local agent had imported a batch of the Rituximab injection which is administered to cancer patients, using a similar forged document. It had been revealed that the said local agent had imported a batch of the said drug, presenting a forged waiver of registration, in the pretext of the same having been issued by the National Medicines Regulatory Authority.



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