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May 18, 2021, 12.13 PM

Indonesian Minister for State Enterprises Ousts Directors of Kimia Farma Subsidiary

Indonesian Minister of State-Owned Enterprises Erick Thohir has recently ousted the directors of Kimia Farma Diagnostika (KFD), a subsidiary of the Kimia Farma state-owned pharmaceutical company over the Eid al-Fitr or Idul Fitri holidays.

The move came less than a month after police in North Sumatra province arrested five Kimia Farma Diagnostika employees at the end of April for reusing old rapid test kits in a racket dating to December 2020.

Erick decided to give KFD President-Director Adil Fadila Bulqini and General Finances as well as Human Resources Director Ilham Sabariman their marching orders, on grounds that the scandal undermined public confidence in the government.

“We deemed that KFD has strayed from core values of state-owned enterprises, namely serve, protect and work for the common good. Regardless of the individual or their standing, they are free to try another line of work,” he said in a press release on Monday, May 17.

“As a health services company, public confidence stemming from quality service is non-negotiable. [The ouster] is not a punitive measure, but our way of ensuring [Kimia Farma Diagnostika] and other state-owned enterprises comply with those core values.”

The former Inter Milan owner noted that “The existence of the used rapid test ring indicated a weakness in the system. If allowed to continue, it will affect the public’s trust [in State-Owned companies].”

Erick also informed that an independent team of auditors is going through the books of all labs under Kimia Farma, including Kimia Farma Diagnostika.

While both parties reviewed their standard operating procedures or SOP, it did not stop Erick from firing the guilty parties or allowing lawmakers to press charges against them.

Police in the Indonesian province of North Sumatra arrested the five people behind the Kimia Farma Diagnostika rapid test kits ring in an undercover sting at the province’s Kualanamu Airport on April 27.

Investigators said they were tipped by travelers disgruntled with their positive Covid-19 results.



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