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Nurses threaten to join doctors’ strike

By Sanya Emmanuel Mango In Kampala

The president Uganda Nurse and Midwives Union Cherop Justus Kiplangat has threatened to mobilize all nurses’ country wide to join the ongoing medical strike if government does not address the medical internee’s demands.
Speaking at a press conference held recently at the Union Head Office in Mulago cherop said a supplementary budget was recently passed and part of the money was meant to cater for the internee’s welfare somethings he says should be enhanced.
A press statement titled “The Way Government Is Handling the Issues of Striking Medical Interns dated 16th Dec 2012”
The president Uganda Nurse and Midwives Union Cherop Justus informed media that his union had received disturbing information from the director of medical services Dr Mwebesa regarding the dismissal medical interns from government houses and facilities to create room for new applicants reporting in early 2022 as uncalled action.
Adding that as a Union they recognize medical interne demand at legitimist and have now added their voice to the demands to those of the interns as government should talk with medical interns and find a lasting solution foal all their demands and grievances, that government suspends the implementation of the suspension of medical interns from houses with immediate effect to allow for such talk to take place.
He appealed to responsible officer at the ministry of health to liaise with their colleagues at the ministry of finance to see to it that money is released as a way of respecting the president directive.
“Why should government embark on constructing roads in Congo while its seasional workers are languishing in poverty and poor working conditions, government must release this money” cherop said.
Before enforcing the current industrial action, a team of medical inter through the body Federation of Uganda Medical Interns meant president Museveni at state house and they demand for improvement of medical supplies in government hospitals, expressed concern over the government’s failure to increase internee’s salaries currently internees receive a holistic salary of 750,000 UG shillings per month and they are demanding 2.5 million shillings as promised by President Yoweri Museveni in 2017, and lack of health insurance among others.
Cherop warned that if government does not address the medical internes demands within a period of two weeks he will be forced to mobilize all nurses’ country wide to join the strike, “in case government does not handle medical interns very well and end the strike, we shall remain with no option but to join the strike which will be very detrimental to government considering the fact nurses and midwives are the biggest workforce in the health sector “the stament read.
“I’m going to mobilize all the nurses in this country to stand in solidarity with our collogues because we need to send a signal to those in respective offices that the moment the president gives a directive it should be horned” cherop added in June 2012 went on strike demanding for launch allowance
At same press conferences the union president castigated the manner in which police arrested a group of medical internees who were marching to parliament to deliver their petition to the speaker. adding that
When contacted for a comment Dr. Hebert Luswata, the association’s secretary-general, says they are happy that their colleagues are standing with them adding that they are determined to continue the strike until the government fulfills its promises and meets their demands.
In 2017 and in June 2021, President Museveni while addressing the nation said doctors’ salaries will be increased from 2.5 million Uganda shillings ($714) to 5 million shillings ($1,428) – a promise yet to be fulfilled. And in December 2021 while meeting with the leadership of the medical interns the president directed that salaries of the internes be increased to 2.5
million per month while other demands be considered in the next finical year
Emmanuel Aiyenbyoona, a spokesman for the Health Ministry, said the concerns raised by the association are being
addressed. In a tweet, he said a supplementary budget to implement the presidential directive is being processed after
being passed by Parliament.

He called on the doctors to "follow their professional calling by putting patients first."

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