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Patients Pin Mpigi Health Centre Staff for Extortion

Several patients, particularly expectant mothers told trade Minister Amelia Kyambadde that they have been forced to abandon the facility and instead endured a long journey to Gombe Hospital in the neighbouring Butambala district to avoid harassment and extortion.

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Medics and other workers at Mpigi Health Centre IV for extortion have been pinned for extortion and frustrating service delivery at the medical facility.

Several patients, particularly expectant mothers told trade Minister Amelia Kyambadde that they have been forced to abandon the facility and instead endured a long journey to Gombe Hospital in the neighbouring Butambala district to avoid harassment and extortion.

Kyambadde and a team of health ministry officials visited the area after a series of complaints by residents against health officials at the facility. Jalia Namayanja, a resident of Katende narrated that she lost her pregnancy in a way that also threatened her life after delaying to pay 400,000 Shillings which a doctor at the facility had demanded from her.

//Cue in; nemmugamba musawo...

Cue out... nali njabise.”//

Prossy Nannyanzi, another resident told the team that she underwent an operation at the facility, but was abandoned and denied medication because she had not paid the money they demanded from her.

//Cue in; namugamba kati tugenda..

Cue out... kyava agamba waleese ssente?”//

Simon Semwanga, another resident testified that the health workers declined to handle his wife’s case even after paying 200,000 Shillings out of  the 350,000 Shillings which they had asked him to pay, during the COVID-19 lockdown.

//Cue in; naleeta omukyala mu covid...

Cue out... ate nazo nebazinsasuza.”//

The facility in-charge Dr David Lukomwa acknowledged that the accusations against his staffs were straightforward but reasoned that the extortion is due to the poor conditions they are working in.

//Cue in; some times we might...

Cue out... kituufu kyoyogerako.”//

But Kyambadde was puzzledby Lukomwa’s admission to the testimonies and said that he deserved to be arrested for the mishaps in the health centre.  She said that the situation has watered down all her efforts to improve medical services in the district.

//Cue in;  Dr Lukomwa, ntambudde..

Cue out... mumpisizza bubi nnyo.” //

The assistant Commissioner for reproductive health in the Ministry of Health Dr Mugalu Richard noted that the behavior exhibited by the staff at Mpigi health centre IV is inhumane. He said that it is illegal to demand for money from patients and that nobody should be denied services because of their failure to pay for medical services.

//Cue in; but the in-charge...

Cue out... it is punishable.”//

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