What you need to know:
- UMA said Mr Museveni, in a meeting with their leaders last week, agreed to enhance doctors’ salary in the next financial year and give each a tax-free vehicle.
Medical doctors have said they will instead continue with the strike contrary to earlier communication from their president, Dr Samuel Oledo, that they were to call it off before yesterday.
Dr Herbert Luswata, the general secretary of Uganda Medical Association (UMA), told Daily Monitor yesterday that the strike will continue until government delivers on some of the promises made by President Museveni in a meeting with their officials last week.
“Apart from delivering on the promise of increasing salary of medical interns and senior house officers, we want a clarification from government on how to get the tax free cars and where to get the money for the cars; at least for 10 senior consultants for now,” he said.
“We are still engaging government because we are trying to collect information and possibility on the implementation of the presidential directives (regarding our welfare). Yesterday (Tuesday) we met the workers MPs, they wanted to give guidance on the document and the thing which can be obtained immediately. Today (yesterday) we met the Ministry of Finance to seek guidance on why the money for interns has not yet come and yet Parliament passed a supplementary, and they said they are still handling some technicalities before releasing the money,” he said.
The ongoing strike followed a 90-day ultimatum that UMA had given the government to implement President Museveni’s promises, made over years, regarding their payment and other gaps in health system.
Medical officers started the strike on November 21, a week after intern doctors were already striking.
Dr Oledo said on Sunday they were set to call off the strike because they had received a written commitment from President Museveni regarding fulfilment of their demands for welfare and salary increment.
But he had said this would happen after a meeting with their national governing council, which was supposed to happen on Tuesday.
UMA said Mr Museveni, in a meeting with their leaders last week, agreed to enhance doctors’ salary in the next financial year and give each a tax-free vehicle.
He reportedly ordered the minister of Health to ask for all the money she needs to address the problem of jumpy supply of personal protective equipment for health workers. The President said all doctors who qualify for public service should be employed.
UMA said in the commitment, the salary of medical officers will be increased to Shs5 million, senior medical consultants (Shs17m), and intern doctors (Shs2.5m). Intern doctors currently earn Shs750, 000, entry-level doctors (Shs3m) and consultants (Shs7.3m).
Dr Luswata said some of the issues they agreed on with the President were not captured in the letter he wrote to them. Dr Luswata didn’t specify.