By Our Reporter
KAMPALA-SHIFTMEDIA- After we reported on Thursday that the minister for Health had allegedly diverted shs70b meant for nurses lunch, the ministry has come out to clarify the allegations.
In a press statement issued on Thursday, Dr. Diana Atwine the Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Health described the allegations by the President Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union Cherop Kiplangat as “baseless”, unfounded, and authored with “malicious intent” to taint the image of the Ministry of Health Top Management and health sector at large.
Kiplangat had told this website that Health Minister Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng had decided to divert the budgeted Nurses and midwives lunch allowances worth shs70.5billion offered by President Museveni to pay consultants. He said Aceng had described the budget as an “unfunded priority”.
But Atwine in her statement clarified that much as the budget estimates for lunch allowances were worked out, its implementation was affected by the COVID 19 pandemic which constrained the resource envelop.
“All allowances are a multisectoral responsibility of the Ministry of Public Service, Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development, and the line ministry,” noted Atwine.
She said her ministry had not yet received any money to that effect. “Ministry of Health cannot divert money without the knowledge of the Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development.
In our story https://shiftmedianews.com/exposed-health-minister-dr-jane-ruth-aceng-on-spot-for-diverting-shs70b-nurses-money-for-lunch/ we did report the MOFPED had budgeted the shs70.5billion to be effective starting financial year 2021/22. Nurses decided to strike after they got tipped that these monies have been diverted.
What is happening now?
On Thursday a crisis meeting was held between officials from the Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union, Minister for Public Service, and top Health Ministry officials but no solution was reached.
This stalement prompted Prime Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda who instructed MOFPED to release the funds to summon the three-line ministers for a meeting today (Friday)
Our sources Minister from Health, Finance, and Public Service are meeting to agree on how to tackle the problem.
We shall keep you posted on the latest developments……………………….