2 Officers in Vietnam Are Arrested in Covid Check Equipment Scandal


Vietnam’s well being minister and the mayor of the capital, Hanoi, had been got rid of from their posts and arrested this week after being accused of enjoying a component in a Covid-19 check equipment scandal that has ended in fees towards dozens of presidency officers.

The well being minister, Nguyen Thanh Lengthy, and Hanoi’s mayor, Chu Ngoc Anh, had been stripped in their club within the ruling Communist Birthday party and their executive positions prior to their arrests on Tuesday, native media reported.

Mr. Lengthy and Mr. Anh, each in detention, may now not be reached for remark. Neither spoke publicly concerning the allegations towards them prior to their arrest.

In a long-running price-fixing investigation, Viet A Era Company is accused by means of the government of marking up the cost of kits it advertised by means of up to 45 p.c and of bribing native officers to make use of its check as an alternative of others.

The corporate gained greater than $172 million from gross sales of the kits, native media reported. Viet A Era Company’s director common, Phan Quoc Viet, used to be arrested in December.

A spokesman for the Ministry of Public Safety stated in January that Mr. Viet had confessed to paying native officers greater than $34 million to make use of the Viet A check equipment and that by means of inflating costs, the corporate had won greater than $21 million.

Vietnam, one of the vital few Communist-ruled states on the earth, has lengthy suffered from high-level corruption. An anti-corruption force has ended in the arrest of a large number of officers lately.

Mr. Lengthy, the ousted well being minister, and Mr. Anh, the chairman of the Other people’s Committee of Hanoi, who prior to now served as minister of science and generation, face fees of abusing their energy.

In revoking the pair’s Communist Birthday party club, birthday celebration leaders concluded that their political ideology and morality had change into degraded and that they’d violated birthday celebration and state regulations. Birthday party leaders additionally discovered that their movements had led to primary losses to the state finances.

Talking at a web-based convention in January, Mr. Lengthy stated that the costs raised by means of the scandal “are very critical and wish to be treated strictly” however added that they will have to now not undercut the contributions by means of clinical personnel and well being officers in combating the pandemic.

In November, the minister instructed Parliament that he used to be “heartbroken” over the price-fixing fees towards well being officers.

“Despite the fact that rules on bidding are in position, there are nonetheless violations, embezzlement and corruption,” he stated. “We condemn them. The government will maintain it in line with the legislation.”



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