KABALE- About 1,000 residents in Kigezi sub-region have petitioned Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga demanding life-saving emergency services for pregnant women and new born babies at the government health centres.
Through their organisation, White Ribbon Alliance, the residents handed over the petition to Kabale District Woman MP Ronah Ninsiima at Kabale Stadium on Thursday. Recently, the organisation carried out a survey on safe motherhood in Kabale and established that all the seven health centre IVs in the district cannot provide caesarian and blood transfusion services to mothers who get complications during child birth.
Kabale District deputy speaker Flavia Kanagizi, Kisoro District deputy speaker Hellen Nshimiye and the National Coordinator for White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood, Mr Samuel Senfuka, joined the residents as they presented their petition to Ms Ninsima.
They appealed to Parliament to urgently prevail on government to provide the said emergency services to save lives of pregnant mothers.
According to the 2011 Uganda Demographic Health Survey, 17 mothers and 106 babies die during child birth daily.
The pilot survey further indicated that all the health centre IVs do not have the 14 doctors and 14 anesthetic staff as required.
“Only seven out of 22 health centre IIIs in Kabale District have piped water in the labour wards, 11 out of 22 lack blood pressure machines, seven out of 22 lack delivery sets.
“This compromises safety of pregnant mothers and their newborn babies,” the petition reads in part.
The petition asked the government to increase financial investment into healthcare to provide the necessary equipment and attract and retain medical workers, especially in rural health centres.
“We therefore call upon you to use your oversight and budget appropriation roles to prioritise and demand allocation of sufficient funds for life saving emergency care services for pregnant mothers and their newborns in Kigezi during the national budget discussions in Parliament for 2014/2015 financial year,” reads the petition read by the group’s chairman, Mr Julius Barutsya.
Ms Ninsima promised to deliver the petition to Parliament for consideration.