Government is to revamp the three major hospitals in Busoga region in a bid to uplift the health care standards, its chief whip has said. The facilities are Bugiri, Iganga and Jinja regional referral hospitals.
Government Chief whip and Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development Daudi Migereko revealed this during the burial of Bukhooli Central MP Wafula Oguttu’s wife on Sunday in Sonika village, Nsono Parish in Nkono sub-county, Bugiri District.
The minister’s response followed criticism from the opposition at the function that government had neglected the health sector. “Those of us in government are equally bothered that a patient suffers and it takes long to establish that she is suffering from cancer,” Mr Migereko said as he alluded to the cause of the death of Freda Oguttu whose ailment was only diagnosed late in South Africa. He said those in government and the critics were all leaders who could take action but “the difference is that at the moment NRM has a superior programme.”
The preceding Speaker, Leader of Opposition Nandala Mafabi had earlier on questioned government’s commitment to health care provision. “How many of you can afford treatment in South Africa? We urge the Government in power to take the issue of health care seriously. That is the reason some of us are in politics,” he added.
The president Forum for Democratic Change, Dr Kizza Besigye, also criticised government officials for neglecting health care. “We are telling those in government; please attend to the issues of health care before these people (Ugandans) work on you. And they (Ugandans) know what to do,” Dr Besigye said.
Tributes to the deceased
Chief Justice Benjami Odoki, a personal friend of Mr Oguttu, was chief mourner and hailed the late Freda for having lived an exemplary life. “Freda was loving, cheerful and very generous,” Odoki said in brief remarks.
Mr Oguttu, the Daily Monitor founding managing director and editor-in-chief described his late wife as humble, honest and hardworking. He said for a long time she complained of stomach ulcers not knowing she was suffering from cancer. Dr Fred Okuku, an oncologist at Mulago Hospital, said the deceased had succumbed to cancer after failing to respond to chemotherapy.