KAMPALA – The society of radiography of Uganda has threatened to go on a sit down strike if their plea to have their salary scale harmonised as well as expediting the scheme of service. For close to 15 years, the body says it has made numerous atempts to the government to have these demands resolved but in vain.
For the past few months, radiographers say they’ve been struggling with the scheme of service (the structure that lays out how government recruits public servants) sighting that the scheme for radiographers has since been at a level of a diploma that even when they do upgrade to a degree or phd, they’d still receive a salary of a diploma holder.
There demands further seek government to harmonize the salary scale of health workers which is equivalent to their level of education, also increase on their hierarchy on public service deployment at the ministry of health at least upto the level of assistant commissioner.
Two weeks ago, the governing body gave the ministry of health an ultimatum of 21 days to keenly look into these matters and have their discrepancies resolved at the earliest period of time before they go on a sit down strike.
“We had a general meeting and we agreed that the radiographers should demand the government to expedite the process of having the scheme of service approved and we gave 21days to the government to do so,” noted the president of the society, Joe Wambale in a press conference.
He adds that when the government heard of their demands and intention to strike, they immediately responded asking for a meeting with the executive members to see how to expedite the scheme of service and other demands.
“Most of our demands are leaning towards the scheme of service, such as harmonizing the salaries and also their was a presidential directive to have radiographers at a degree level approved and now they can’t be recruited when the scheme of service is not their.”
Wambale says that the leadership has agreed to have the strike at a standstill for a period of two weeks to allow negotiations to go on with the government and asked all radiographers to keep calm as they wait for the next course of action.
In a letter from the Allied health professional council, they asked radiographers membership to avoid any form of strike as it will later impact the patients.
“It is evident that a lot of progress and stride has been made in the recent past and therefore no need for industrial action. Let’s not strike for a patient is the reason we exist as professionals.”
Nalugambwa Jesca, a senior radiographer says they are about 2,500 in number in the whole country, among these, about 1,200 of them are degree holders, about 100 hold masters and 2 hold PHD’s which is a very little number compared to the number of patients they attend to.
“Most of these are not on the scheme of service and they end up going to different countries for greener pastures,” she notes.