Govt not able to pay striking Doctors, Minister Aceng claims

Govt not able to pay striking Doctors, Minister Aceng claims
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The minister of Health Ruth Aceng has told Parliament that government can currently meet only two of the demands raised by striking doctors.

Aceng told MPs on the Health Committee of Parliament that government is ready to improve pay for interns and senior house officers immediately.

Doctors laid down their tools on Tuesday citing outstanding issues relating to their salaries and allowances as well as work conditions.

The minister had been summoned to explain the circumstances surrounding the strike and brief MPs on the way forward.

On the issue of Senior House officers Aceng notes that these workers are under the ministry of education since they are university students and thus the health ministry had to first verify the lists of all officers before going ahead to approve their pay.

This response however generated a barrage of criticism from the MPs including the committee chairperson Michael Bukenya who accused the ministry of being sluggish in implementing policies that have been agreed upon. He argued that 4.2 bn shs was allocated to pay senior house officers but four months down the road the funds remain unused.

An exchange between the minister and Bukenya ensued with the minister insisting that her ministry was not inefficient but instead had to wait for verification lists that were not readily available from the education ministry.

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