The Opposition have called for the closure of Kiruddu hospital until the issue of sewerage disposal is resolved by Government, arguing that keeping the hospital in the current state is likely to put lives of patients at risk.
The call for the closure was made yesterday by the Shadow Minister of Information, Betty Nambooze, who was raising a matter of national importance demanding responses from the Ministry of Internal Affairs to explain why Police has held Makindye East MP, Allan Ssewanyana beyond the constitutional 48 hours of holding suspect without producing them in court.
Nambooze, who is also the Mukono Municipality MP told Parliament that although Shs3.5bn was released to construct a lagoon at Kiruddu after reports that the sewage had broken down, exposing residents and patients to greater healthy hazards, the situation remains dire.
She said the works were supposed to commence in January 2019.
The failure by Government to carry out the works prompted 4000 families to petition Ssewanyana seeking to have the matter addressed and when the Legislator decided to meet his voters, he was arrested and whisked off from Katwe Police Station to Nagalama Police station where he remains in detention.
Nambooze told Parliament that efforts to have information on what charges they have slapped on Ssewanyana have been futile, with reports indicating he might be whisked further to Lwengo to face trial.
Nambooze explained: “Kiruddu hospital is the only facility that treats people with kidney problems that is where we have the Government dialysis machine and dialysis machines generate a lot of waste with diverse consequences. We therefore painfully want to request that Government closes this facility for now and opens it after construction of the lagoon. We are talking about lives of people at Kiruddu both the sick and residents of this area.”
While responding to the matter raised, Obiga Kania, State Minister for Internal Affairs told off Nambooze that Ssewanyana has no prerogative to choose which jail to be kept but the decision lies squarely on the arresting authorities.
“Where he is detained isn’t the choice of the people who is being taken, it is the choice of the arresting authorities to make sure he is safely deposited where his own safety is guaranteed and the arresting officers in their own wisdom which you would query thought he would be safe in Nagalama,” Obiga said.
The Minister said that in the process of Ssewanyana organizing the demonstration, he didn’t inform police and other authorities of desire to do so, adding that whereas Government, isn’t content with the sanitation condition and allow it continue to deteriorate, it was wrong for Ssewanyana to lock up the facility.
Obiga explained: “Ssewanyana went with locks to lock the hospital; he has no right to lock the Government hospital. He has other ways of addressing his frustrations and therefore, the people who are in charge of law and order he derives from doing so.”
Opposition on Museveni Sole candidature
Meanwhile, the Leader of Opposition, Betty Aol has said the decision by the National Resistance Movement (NRM) top organ, Central Executive Committee to endorse President Yoweri Museveni as the sole candidate for the 2021 general election isn’t the business for the Opposition in Uganda.
“Whatever they decide as NRM CEC is not my business, what CEC said is not binding. What we can do is to sensitise our people. What I have seen for the few months I have been LoP is that the people are kept in the dark,” said Aol.
Aol made the remarks yesterday during a twitter chat session and when asked by journalists what her comments to the latest move by NRM, she said that issues of NRM aren’t a concern for the opposition, a statement that attracted more questions from the journalists.