By LYDIA AMUYA OMECH
ARUA CITY[SHIFTMEDIA NEWS] Three medical personnel attached to the Arua Regional Refferal Hospital are locked up in ‘coolers’ over alleged theft of digital x-ray machine components.
The West Nile Region Police Spokesperson Josephine Angucia identified the suspects as Billington Abila, a radiographer, Alex Okello, and Benard Olul who are storekeepers.
According to Uganda Radionetwork, they were arrested on Tuesday after Hillary Onziga, the in-charge T.B ward and X-ray machine reported to police that the components of the x-ray were missing.
According to Angucia, Abila reportedly took the components that include a laptop and a Samsung Galaxy tablet to Furaha Link ventures limited, a financial institution in Arua City to secure a loan of Shs1.2 million.
The x-ray and its components were recently donated by the Uganda Catholic Medical Bureau (UCMB), the technical arm of the Health Commission of the Uganda Episcopal Conference for T.B management.
Felix Obedgiu, a staff of Furaha Link Ventures Ltd, Arua branch confirmed the incident saying they want the suspect to pay back the loan.
“The administrators of the hospital came demanding for things one of the workers brought for us to give him the loan. Four us we only want our money then we can hand their things back to them,” he said.
Preliminary Police investigations blame the incident on laxity and poor record management on the movement of equipment at the hospital stores.
Over the past few years, Arua regional referral hospital has recorded thefts of essential medical equipment some of which are still under police investigations.
For instance, in December last year, five staff of the hospital were arrested over the theft of an ambulance. The Toyota Land Cruiser Reg. No. UG 6812M disappeared from the hospital parking yard on the night of Saturday, March 27, 2021.
In February 2020, an autoclave machine and assorted kits worth over Shs500 million also disappeared from the hospital and were recovered from Nebbi.