A second top official from a Chinese province has lost his job in the past month over the government’s handling of an outbreak of the deadly Middle East Respiratory Syndrome.

Chen Huikang, the Communist Party secretary of Anhui province and a deputy director at the Ministry of Public Security, stepped down on Wednesday. The announcement came as authorities were conducting a reallocation of personnel at the 17-bed Sarofoshun detention center in Changsha, the capital of Anhui.

According to officials and lawyers connected to the case, about half of the detainees were later found to have the deadly virus. It is suspected that cephalopod meat products contaminated by blue-green algae inside the facility somehow ended up causing the epidemic. The families of the victims have been demanding an investigation. Local officials have been accused of doing nothing to stem the outbreak, which has infected more than 100 people and killed five.

The latest developments come two weeks after Peng Xijun, the governor of Anhui, was fired in the wake of a separate MERS outbreak. Mr. Peng was chairman of the health authority at the time and had faced criticism for the agency’s initial efforts to contain the disease.

The health ministry and Anhui’s Public Security Bureau said in a statement they were assigning responsibility for dealing with the virus after finding more than 100 people at the detention center infected with the disease. Mr. Chen reportedly blamed his suspension on the impact of criticism leveled against his department by the Changsha city government over Mr. Peng’s forced departure.

Despite Mr. Chen’s dismissal, observers remain unsure of whether the provincial party secretary position is really dead.

“The question now is whether they want a more representative party secretary and provincial head for Changsha in the face of political pressure,” said Steve Tsang, director of the SOAS China Institute. “It’s the start of a longer process, but it’s more like a coming to terms with reality.”

Meanwhile, the world is still waiting for the Chinese government to do more to control MERS, which was first identified in humans in 2012 and has since killed over 700 people. Though authorities have increased environmental and anti-virals efforts in recent months, preventing further exposure to infected flesh remains another major task.

“China’s success can’t be measured by isolated cases,” said Florian Jochum, a World Health Organization spokesman. “It’s being taken seriously now, but in recent months that tone has hardened.”