The Ministry of Health has termed as rumors, a story published by an online media house stating that “Health Minister Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng is on spot for diverting Shs.70b nurses’ money for lunch.
Earlier this week, the President of the Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union Justus Kiplangat called for an emergency strike, over failure by government to include their lunch allowance in the National Budget.
Now, the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Health, Dr. Diana Atwine, says that Kiplangat’s claims that lunch allowances for nurses and midwives of this country is an unfunded priority are unfounded and authored with malicious intent to taint the image of the Ministry of Health Top Management and health sector at large.
However, Dr. Atwine says the Budget estimates for lunch allowances were worked out, but the implementation was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic which constrained the resource envelope.
She added that all allowances are a multisectoral responsibility of the Ministry of Public Service, Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MOFPED) and the line Ministry.
“The Ministry of Health has not received any money to this effect. Ministry of Health cannot divert money without the knowledge of
MOFPED. The Ministry of Health; Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development; and Ministry of Public Service are working out a sustainable solution to this issue as communicated in our earlier engagements, therefore we request all parties to be patient” Dr. Atwine said.
According to Kiplangat, Government promised to have their lunch allowances incorporated in the 2021 Budget, effective July 2021, but this has not been done.