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Uganda cabinet, striking doctors in crisis meeting

By Tom Mugisha,

KAMPALA – Uganda’s multi-sectoral cabinet committee established last week to listen to demands of the striking doctors was on Monday holding a crisis meeting with the doctors whose strike has paralysed government hospitals.

The meeting is intended to bring amicable solution but the doctors are insisting that the strike will continue if their salaries are not raised.

The doctors have accused the Health Minister Dr Ruth Aceng of using intimidation and threats when she said that government was going to rollcall doctors on strike.

The doctors have instead threatened to withdraw emergency health services which had remained operational when at the beginning of the strike on November 6.

A statement issued by the Ministry of Health on Wednesday said the meeting was taking place at the office Uganda’s Prime Minister.

“The multi-sectoral committee constituted by cabinet to address the ongoing industrial action by Medical workers, shall meet the Uganda Medical Association Executive Committee, today 15th November 2017, at Office of the Prime Minister at 10:00am,” the statement said.

The committee comprised of the ministers of Health, Finance, Public Service, Education & Sports, Gender, Labour and Social Development and the Attorney General has been tasked to arrive at an agreement with the doctors to call off the industrial action which has paralysed health care service delivery in all public hospitals.

As part of their demands, the doctors want government to review their salaries which would see an intern doctor earn Shs8.5million as opposed to the current Shs960, 000 before tax.

They also want a medical officer or teaching assistant to be paid Shs15 million and accorded a two-bedroom house plus a 2.5cc vehicle.

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