19 January 2018, Friday, 10:26

Vitebsk region residents defend doctor, sacked for political reasons


Dwellers of villages in the Vitebsk district demand to reinstate Ihar Pastnou, who was dismissed for criticising Vitebsk region governor Kasinets.

They said their children need a qualified pediatrician, Belsat TV reports. “We need him back! He is a real doctor,” Zinaida Shalabanava, a dweller of  a village in the Vitebsk district, says.

Ihar Pastnou earlier appeared in independent media criticising the local authorities for squandering and inability to create conditions for proper medical services.

Ihar Pastnou already suffered for his love for truth two years ago that led to termination of his employment agreement. Lukashenka's aide in the Vitebsk region, Mikalai Damashkevich, defended the doctor. He was proposed another job with a lower salary. Working at medical and obstetric centres in the Vitebsk region,  Pastnou has struggled against  money wasting in the health care sector and exposed problems of the health care system in the national and local independent media. He turned attention to uncompleted construction of a surgical unit of the cancer hospital, slow repair works in the infectious diseases hospital and mothballing  the building of the Afghan centre.

“People in mufti” began to visit Pastnou and his bosses at work to scare the doctor. As a result the doctor was dismissed.