Hoax news reports claim Pakistani government hired former army general to head medical regulatory body
Multiple posts on Facebook and Twitter claim that the Pakistani government has appointed a retired army general as the head of the Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC), a regulatory agency that oversees the county’s entire medical profession. The claim, however, is false; the claim was made in a hoax news report and the government has made no such appointment.
The claim was published on January 21, 2021 a Facebook page called “Vocabulary and Dawn News’ Informative Articles”, which has more than 50,000 followers.
The page's profile picture is identical to the logo of major Pakistani English-language newspaper Dawn, which can be seen here.
The post shows a photo of retired Lieutenant General Asif Mumtaz Sukhera and has a caption that reads: “Lieutenant Retired General Asif Mumtaz appointed as Chairman Pakistan Medical Commission PMC.”
The post circulated as the current government led by Prime Minister Imran Khan faces criticism for appointing senior army officials to top civilian jobs.
However, the claim is false.
A reverse image search found that the photo of Sukhera shared in the posts is from an army ceremony in 2016. It was published on an official Pakistani military Facebook page here on August 26, 2016.
Below is a screenshots comparison of the 2016 military Facebook post (L) and false post shared on the imposter Facebook page (R):
Moreover, the PMC is led by a president and not a chairman, as the posts claim.
The current president of the commission is Dr Arshad Taqi, as noted on the PMC’s website here.
Sukhera, however, is currently serving as a member of Pakistan's Higher Education Commission, as noted on the commission’s website.