The below is an email which I received last night and ought to give you further pause for thought regarding RCSI Bahrain.
Again - thank you for your continued interest and your actions of solidarity,
Sent: 15 October 2011 10:49
Subject: RCSI: Apology or hypocrisy?
I am writing this letter to you to raise an issue of deep concern with regards to the recent statements of RCSI CEO, Prof Cathal Kelly.
It is a bit ironic that he is apologizing for the ‘unacceptable’ treatment of students in RCSI-Bahrain when he was involved in sacking a senior administrative staff.
On March 30, 2011, Riyadh Dhaif, University’s Registrar, was forced into early retirement with the justification of “medical sickness”.
He was also forced to sign a legal document stating that he will not sue the university in court for their decision.
Prof Kelly was in Bahrain and met Riyadh personally on 30 March to give him the document to sign.
Dhaif was one of the founders of RCSI-Bahrain. Since 2004, he worked really hard side-by-side with Prof Kevin O’Malley (founder president 2004-08) and Michael Horgan (CEO RCSI 2004-2009) in putting the building blocks of this institution in Bahrain.
He knew it all, from getting the proper building to paying all the bills to knowing every single student that joins.
He was the man working behind the shadows.
He was there when RCSI-Bahrain was only a small villa in Adliya up until it grew into a campus in Busaiteen.
He spent more time with the university than with his own kids. To Riyadh, RCSI was his bundle of joy… RCSI was like his baby!
Prior to RCSI, he used to work at the Ministry of Health (MOH) as the director of international health and public relations, prior to that he was the director of the minister’s office.
In 2004, RCSI requested his services through "secondment" from MOH, initially for 3 years then the plan was for him to retire and stay in RCSI.
Last year, RCSI asked him to retire from MOH because they wanted to keep him as he was of value to them… He was an important asset to the university.
Riyadh is a father of four.
He is a healthy gentleman that lives a healthy active life.
He has been a vegetarian for more than eight years now and has never been diagnosed with a medical problem.
In February 2011, he developed a single episode of chest pain on which he was admitted to hospital for 1 day for observation.
He was then diagnosed with high blood pressure and early diabetes mellitus.
Riyadh is also the Uncle of Dr. Ghassan and Dr. Basim Dhaif, two out of twenty medics sentenced to jail due treating injured protesters during Bahrain’s uprising.
Despite that, Riyadh was never into politics and had never given an opinion with regards to recent events in Bahrain.
Hence, it is hard to comprehend that his “retirement” was due to medical reasons as more than 50% of the population in Bahrain have Diabetes and High Blood Pressure.
These are chronic diseases and are not considered as disabilities. It looks more realistic that his sacking was due to his relationship with the Dhaif Brothers.
It’s a shame that after all his efforts to add to the prosperity of this institution, this is the way he gets rewarded.
There was no apology letter, no letter of appreciation, no farewell party and even no invitation to the conferring ceremony held on July 13th 2011.
RCSI really looked into it to protect themselves when they made him sign the legal documents.
Nevertheless, it is simply unfair that this goes unnoticed especially when RCSI CEO is the one that technically fired him.
We don’t really fully believe that the decisions made in Bahrain’s Campus and the ‘Wholly inappropriate’ actions were taken without the College’s knowledge.
It’s quite hard to digest after Riyadh’s incident.
PLEASE SHARE THIS WITH ANY MEDIA OUTLET OR MEDICAL ORGANISATION THAT YOU HAVE DEALINGS WITH.