Medical interns and doctors who were Wednesday arrested while making their way to parliament have been released, according to Kampala Metropolitan Police Deputy spokesperson ASP Luke Owoyesigire.

The medics were intercepted and arrested while marching to parliament to deliver a petition calling-on parliament to intervene in their standoff with government over their delayed enhanced salaries and allowances.

Police intercepted 27 and took them to Central Police Station in Kampala but three others reached parliament where parliamentary police also arrested them.

“They have all been released on police bond after recording their statements. Investigations are still ongoing and they will report back on the days designated on their terms of release on bond,” ASP Owoyesigire told Plus News.

Both medical interns and doctors have been on strike for a couple of weeks demanding that relevant authorities effect President Yoweri Museveni’s pledge of increasing allowances of medical interns from Shs750,000 to Shs2.5 million. Doctors after the enhancement will earn Shs5 million.

The Ministry of Health last week decided that the striking medical interns leave the training sites to pave way for the incoming interns.

It is behind this background that they want parliament to intervene and find an amicable and long term solution.

Prior to their arrest, Dr Samuel Oledo, the UMA President said, “We are going to parliament to take our document indicating the different things that the President spoke. We are taking the document to the Speaker of Parliament to ensure that our issues are resolved.”

Apart from salary and allowances enhancement, doctors also want government to increase the drugs and sandries budget, provide enough drugs and PPEs in hospitals and well as compensating families of doctors whose lives were lost on the frontline fighting COVID-19.

Parliament already approved a supplementary budget from which the enhanced allowances for medical interns will be paid but the finance ministry is yet to release the funds.

In a letter ‘firing’ the interns, Dr Henry Mwebesa, the Director General Health Services in the Ministry of health, said that “as soon as funds for enhancement of Medical Interns’ allowances are released by the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, the Ministry of Health will pay their arrears up to the time the medical interns went on strike.

”It is should be noted that the medical interns are remaining with only two months to complete their internship and get fully registered with their respective councils as medical officers, pharmacists, nurses and midwives.

On how the fired intern doctors will complete their second and last rotation, Mwebesa said they (striking medical interns) will find their own way.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *