September 30, 2020, 3:18 am

Abu Taher Bappa

2020-07-26 21:02:48 BdST

Medical technologists end hunger strike

More than 50 medical technologists demanding permanent jobs after working as volunteers amid the coronavirus pandemic have called off their hunger strike on assurances from the new director general of health services.

ABM Khurshid Alam went to the protest site outside the National Institute of Laboratory Medicine and Referral Centre, where the demonstrators had joined as volunteers, at Agargaon in Dhaka hours after taking charge on Sunday.

The protesters ended the strike when he offered them lemonade. The demonstrations began last Thursday afternoon.

Alam said he conveyed Health Minister Zahid Maleque’s message to the protesters that the government will consider their issue, but it will take some time.

“The minister has assured me of a settlement of the issue. As the DG, I can promise that I will try my best on this issue,” he added.

The new director general noted that many passengers had to cancel booking after failing to undergo coronavirus tests due to the strike. Bangladesh has recently made coronavirus negative test result mandatory for overseas travel.

Earlier, Alam met the staff at his new workplace. He also met Zahid at the ministry.

The government appointed Alam last week, replacing Abul Kalam Azad, after a series of scams related to the COVID-19 outbreak in the health sector.

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