KAMPALA – Nurses and midwives in Uganda have renewed calls for better working and living conditions including accommodation and feeding, and have asked the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga to intervene.
Justus Cherop Kiplangat, the President of Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union said that nurses and midwives work day and night, hence the need for government to provide them with decent and convenient accommodation.
“The nurses have no houses and the ones which are there now, are in a sorry state. Nurses are forced to report for duty late because they live very far and this affects service delivery,” he said.
Cherop with other representatives of the Union told Kadaga on Wednesday, March 4, 2020, that the Nurses Union wrote to President Yoweri Museveni requesting for staff houses and so far, the Ministries of Public Service, Health and Housing are in support of the proposal.
These renewed calls come as the country prepares to commemorate International Nurses and Midwives day on 12 May 2020.
“We request that when that proposal reaches Parliament, please support it,” he said.
Cherop also asked Kadaga to follow up on the presidential pledge to increase the nurses’ and midwives’ lunch allowance to Shs15, 000.
“Currently, they give us Shs2,200 for lunch. This money can only afford a small snack but not a normal meal and yet nurses and doctors cannot do without lunch because they work day and night,” he said.
Cherop requested the Speaker to write to the President to fulfil his Shs1billion pledge towards the nurses’ and midwives’ Sacco which he said was made two years ago.
“I wrote to the President and he wrote back and directed me to go the Ministry of Finance. I went there and they told me to wait but up to today, we have not yet got that money,” he said.
According to Cherop, the celebrations which will be held in Kamuli district involve activities like medical camps and general cleaning of the district by nurses and midwives which between09 to 12 May 2020.
The Resident District Commissioner (RDC) Kamuli, Moses Ddumba called for recognition of some of the retired nurses and midwives who made a contribution in the health sector in Kamuli.
Kadaga promised to write to the president requesting him to fulfil his outstanding pledges.
“If we are going to construct staff houses, we shall need a loan to be passed in Parliament and anything to do with the improving health services, we will be happy to support it. I can assure you that the health sector enjoys a lot of support in Parliament,” Kadaga added.
She also supported the request to recognize nurses and midwives for their outstanding contribution, saying that she will handle it with the people responsible.
Kadaga however, advised the organisers to be cautious of the corona virus threat saying that the gathering will depend on the status of the virus in the country.