Rot at Jinja Hospital shocks State House health monitoring unit

The State House health monitoring unit (HMU) has unearthed shocking rot at Jinja Regional Referral Hospital. Besides the rampant theft of medical equipment worth sh467m, coupled with extortion of money from patients, laboratory officials were faulted for issuing fake results.

Speaking at a Baraza organised by State House at Busoga Square in Jinja on Friday, Dr Jackson Ojera Abusu, the HMU director, said they had since January 10 pitched camp at the hospital to conduct investigations. Abusu said their eight-day findings started with the disappearance of the CD4 machine in August last year from the facility, which later resurfaced mysteriously. However, Abusu regretted that the sh30m machine was no longer functional.

He said 14 oxygen cylinders, worth sh11.5m, were stolen and the team at Jinja children’s hospital is being probed over the theft of a laptop and flat television screen and other items worth sh9m. The team discovered that some doctors were selling blood, while others connive with cleaners, who persuade expectant mothers into having C-sections, purposely to solicit money from them.

The team unearthed two workers who were earning double salaries from Jinja, Kamuli and Luuka. Sources say Faizal Bazibu was meant be at Bugulumbya health centre IV as a laboratory assistant, while Aggrey Matende was a laboratory technician in Luuka. Abusu, who did not disclose how long the duo had worked at Jinja Hospital and how much they were earning, said the two had caused a financial loss of sh27m to their respective local governments.

As a result, 13 health officials have so far been arrested but released on bond as investigations go on. Julius Mufumba, a resident of Mafubira, asked the team probe lower health units, saying many close at 2:00pm

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Lukwago Joseph grew up in a newspaper family, and rumor has it that instead of playing the guitar in his infancy, his parents put a reporter’s notebook and a pen next to him shortly after he turned born eight years. Before becoming editor of UGANDANZ, Lukwago was a parliament news editor for WBS TV. He joined UGANDANZ in July 2018, A few months after the company launched. Lukwago also spent five years as a freelance reporter, where he covered reporting for the highest bidder, intelligence, foreign policy, and Ugandan police. Lukwago graduated from Makerere University in 2008 with a B.A. in Journalism and worked on his college newspaper.