Jordan whistleblower claims that some food imports are 'unsafe'
The Food and Drugs Establishment of Jordan filed a lawsuit on 30 October against Dr. Sanaa Gammoh, a former director of the body's testing laboratories, saying her allegations were unfounded.
Gommoh is undeterred and stands by her allegations.
"Oh, I welcome the judiciary. It will judge the accuracy of what I said, after spending 20 years speaking to the same people without result," Gammoh told Jordanian newspaper Al-Ghad on Tuesday. "This is an opportunity to put all the papers and this whole file on the table."
Many Jordanians expressed support and admiration for Sanaa Gammoh on social media using the hashtag #SolidaritywithSanaGammoh.
The issue has underlined distrust in some sectors of society about food standards in the kingdom.
#كلنا_سناء_قموه— Hadeel alrawabdeh (@HadeelRawabdeh1) November 1, 2021
متضامنة مع د. #سناء_قموه.. قبل ربع قرن أطاحت تصريحات مشابهة بوزير الصحة الأسبق عبدالرحيم ملحس..
مسموح تفتح تمك عزيزي المواطن اذا كان كلامك تسحيج ودهلزه وتمسيح جوخ.. أما اذا انتقدت أو أشرت على الغلط بتتبهدل وتُقصى وبتتسكر الابواب بوجهك.. pic.twitter.com/g1LQNOb8k8
In an interview with local media on 23 October, Dr. Gammoh alleged that several foodstuff imported into Jordan contained concerning levels of carcinogenic substances.
She also claimed that basic products including milk, fish, wheat, rice and legumes did not meet food safety standards, according to tests carried out in her laboratory.
Dr. Gammoh highlighted the relationship between some of the components detected in the food and the emergence of colorectal cancer and breast cancer.
The Food and Drugs Establishment dismissed Gammoh's claims in the aftermath, but several MPs called for an investigation into the case.
Some Jordanians referred to the fate of former health minister Abdel Rahim Malhas, who resigned from his position in the 1990s after making allegations that Arab states were importing foodstuff unfit for consumption.
The director of the authority, Dr. Nizar Mhaidat, stated on Monday that the food safety system in Jordan is effective and that Gammoh's statements are based on the research of a Master's student she supervised, and not on published research.