ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi has promulgated an ordinance to run the National Institute of Health (NIH) through a board of governors (BoG).
Sajid Shah, a spokesperson for the Ministry of National Health Services (NHS), said the ordinance will not only improve the performance of the NIH and the Pakistan Health Research Council (PHRC) but will also help in addressing a number of issues such as delays in payment of salaries to the employees.
According to the draft of the ordinance, the goal of the ordinance is to reorganise the NIH.
“It is expedient to reorganise the NIH and to provide for an autonomous body to operate and manage institutes and centres for carrying out research and for the prevention of the spread of infectious diseases and health emergencies in Pakistan. The Senate and the National Assembly are not in session and the President is satisfied that circumstances exist which render it necessary to take immediate action,” the draft dated Dec 19 stated.
“All intellectual property and legal rights relating to discoveries and inventions and any improvement in materials, methods, processes, apparatus or equipment made by any officer or employee of the NIH in the course of their employment shall vest in the NIH. Not with standing anything to the contrary in any contract or agreement or in the conditions of service, every person in the service of the NIH and the PHRC immediately, before the commencement of this Ordinance, shall stand transferred to the NIH and become an employee of the NIH,” it added.
All employees of the NIH and PHRC will be given one time option within three months to become employees of the NIH.
“The civil servants who opt for such employment shall be subject to terms and conditions of employment as prescribed by the BoG including but not limited to their service structure, promotion and disciplinary matters. Employees who opt for such employment shall be entitled to post-retirement benefits and emoluments for the period of their service as civil servants as per existing government laws and rules. A civil servant who does not exercise the option shall remain a civil servant under the Civil Servants Act 1973 and shall be repatriated to the administrative division.”
It is also mentioned that employees shall cease to be civil servants from the date of their absorption in the service of the NIH and their seniority and other matters vis-à-vis employment with the NIH shall be determined in the manner as may be prescribed by the board.