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Is Dr. Marvin Manzanero making a comeback to the Ministry of Health?

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Dr. Marvin Manzanero Belize

Posted: Monday, January 17, 2022. 10:21 am CST.

By Benjamin Flowers: Former Director of Health Services (DHS) Dr. Marvin Manzanero has made national headlines many times since the Briceño administration took office, notably for being unceremoniously removed from his post while on sick leave recovering from COVID-19. But newly appointed Minister of Health and Wellness Kevin Bernard says that he wants to move past those problems with Manzanero still a part of the ministry.

Appearing on Channel 5’s Open Your Eyes morning talk show, Bernard said that he has reached out to Dr. Manzanero over the weekend and has a meeting scheduled with him today to discuss his future at the Ministry.

“Despite what may have happened with Dr. Manza, I believe that Dr. Manza can continue to play a very significant role in this ministry, at a senior level,” Bernard said. “I would want to keep Dr. Manzanero at some point in some senior position.”

He stressed that he intends to avoid the politics involved and focus on getting the technical aspects of the ministry running properly to address not only the national COVID-19 response but also other health issues affecting the country such as noncommunicable diseases.

Prime Minister John Briceño had publicly condemned Manzanero’s performance at the Ministry, saying that he had mismanaged the national COVID-19 response, despite him being at the helm at a time when the national response was, in the public’s view, arguably at its best.

Bernard stressed that the Prime Minister’s assessment has nothing to do with where he would want to fit Manzanero at the Ministry, so he is not going against the administration’s wishes by bringing the former DHS back in some other capacity.

 

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