Activists Resolve To Storm Parliament Over Doctors Export, Pay

Health activists and Associations of medics have resolved to storm parliament with a petition calling for improvement of Health Workers’ remuneration.

Dr Elioda Tumwesigye
Dr Elioda Tumwesigye

Led by Center for Health, Human rights and Development (CEHURD) the Civil Society Organizations and associations of Health Workers claim that many health practitioners are leaving the country because of government’s failure to improve their pay and other conditions at work.

“Government is duty bound to protect human rights and lives of the people so it should not be involved in exportation of medical workers which is a violation of human rights,”

CEHURD Legal officer David Kabanda said yesterday after the resolution to storm Parliament was reached at Hotel Africana.

He said they will have to sue government if their concerns are not adequately addressed by Parliament.

The gathering was attended by officers from the Ministry of Health, the Uganda Nurses and Midwives Association, Uganda Private Nurses and Midwives and the Uganda Medical and Dental Practitioners Council among others.

The group also resolved to petition cabinet and other relevant committees condemning government recent agreement to export Doctors, Midwives, Nurses and other health workers to Trinidad and Tobago.

Last Month, Government had signed a bilateral agreement with the government of Trinidad and Tobago to export 263 specialists to the said country through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The specialties wanted included 15 internal medicine specialists, 4 Psychiatrists, 20 Radiologists, 15 Pediatricians, 4 Ear, Nose and Throat specialists, 100 Registered Midwives, 4 Anesthetists, 4 ophthalmologists, 40 Public Health Nurses and 100 Midwives among others.

However Dr. Collins Tusingwire assured the activists that the Minister of Health, Dr. Elioda Tumwesigye has already halted the plans to export the health workers.

“We realized they wanted specialists yet we are short of specialists we do not have enough even in our general referral hospitals. We have now left it to the Ministry of Labor,” he said.

Dr. Paul Zziwa said Civil Society organizations should use this offer from Trinidad and Tobago to act as a benchmark for advocating for better working conditions of the medical workers.