The Uganda Medical Association (UMA) has called for the resignation of both the Health Minister Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng and Director General Health Services Henry Mwebesa over incompetence.
In a press statement issued by the UMA president Dr. Samuel Oledo Odongo, UMA said that the Health Ministry officials have failed to implement President Museveni’s directives on salary increment and other welfare issues.
Odongo said that UMA has held several engagements with the government since 2017, discussing issues that affect doctors and in 2021, they held a special meeting with President Museveni after which he gave a number of directives to the Health Ministry.
Odongo said that Museveni directed the Ministry of Health to form a special committee to oversee the improvement of doctors’ and health workers’ welfare and its effect on the health services in the country.
Key among the directives according to Odongo was that all hospitals and health centers should pay interns Shs 2.5 million per month while medical officers were to earn Shs 5 million per month.
The President also directed that the P.A.Y.E on the salaries of doctors be reduced from 30 percent to 10 percent among other directives.
“However, following our engagements, doctors have found trouble to obtain documentation of the commitment of plans to implement these directives,” Odongo said.
Families of the doctors who succumbed to Covid-19 were also supposed to be facilitated according to the Presidential directive, but this, according to Odongo, has not been implemented.
UMA also expressed concern over the letter from Dr. Mwebesa in which he fired interns and ordered them to vacate government hospitals by Friday.
UMA Secretary General Dr. Luswata Herbert said that these orders are “illegal” and gave the Health Ministry a maximum of 48 hours to rescind the orders.
“The rescinding of these orders by the Ministry of Health and Director General if not done, will culminate in the addressing of this issue and other related matters through the Courts of Law,” Luswata warned.
UMA, an association of doctors in Uganda and abroad brings together 7000 doctors in Uganda and in the diaspora, the association works through 14 regional branches mostly distributed around the main regional referral hospitals.
The association was formed to advocate for the welfare and professionalism of the medical doctors of Uganda and for Ugandans to enjoy quality health serves.
Doctors under UMA have been on strike since November 22, 2021, and they have vowed never to return to work until their demands are met.