Tymoshenko Involved In Fraudulent Procurement Of Vaccines, Says Government

KIEV, Ukraine -- The Department of Information and Communications of the Secretariat of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine has called absurd the statement of ex-Premier Yulia Tymoshenko that she was not involved into the fraudulent procurement of vaccines during a flu outbreak in Ukraine in 2009.

Yulia Tymoshenko

"No other than the former prime minister made every effort to conduct the operation, which was recognized by a U.S. court as a fraud which has caused damage to Ukraine," reads a statement posted on the Web site of the Ukraine's government on Wednesday.

It said that Tymoshenko signed a government decree on granting government guarantees to Ukrvaktsyna.

The report contained Tymoshenko's statement at a meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers on November 11 2009: "An agreement was reached on the procurement of resuscitation equipment, vaccines against seasonal flu pandemic, an agreement on the purchase of antibiotics. The work has halted for a simple reason: almost eight days passed and the president has not signed the law to allocate UAH 1 billion to fight the epidemic of influenza."

"On November 25, 2009 Tymoshenko publicly stated that the flu vaccine will be purchased for budget funds. And Chief Medical Officer Oleksandr Bilovol publicly said that they needed 12.5 million doses of vaccine at a price of $15 per dose. Although the media had already warned that both the number of required vaccines and their price were overestimated, which was actually confirmed in 2011 by a U.S. Supreme," the report reads.

The department also said that it was Tymoshenko, who started the procedure of facilitating the registration of vaccines in Ukraine and promised that the parliament would struggle to overcome the president's veto and to allocate UAH 1 billion to fight the epidemic.

Source: Interfax