Amuru, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Members of the Lamogi Sub-County Village Health Teams – VHT have petitioned the Amuru Resident District Commissioner Geoffrey Osborn Oceng over irregularities in payments for the ongoing COVID-19 home-based care training.
The district health department rolled out training of 29 VHTs in home-based care for COVID-19 patients, on Thursday, following a reported increase in the number of cases, from South Sudan. The district shares a border with South Sudan and hosts hundreds of truck drivers in transit.
But at the end of the training participants only received an allowance of 50,000 Shillings instead of the 100,000 Shillings that they signed for. The VHTs say that they tasked the trainers to explain why they were being given only half of what they signed for, but could not get a satisfactory explanation.
Atkin Ojara, the Lamogi Sub-County Chairperson says that the training was undertaken without his knowledge. But available information indicates that the Ministry of Health dispensed over 100 million Shillings to the District to train Village Health Teams as well as parish and sub-county COVID-19 task force members in home-based care across 203 villages in Amuru.
However, Ojara says the actions of offering less than the amount signed for by the participants tantamount to fraud, a result of which he referred the matter to the RDC for redress. He said such activities put the government in the spotlight for not delivering yet her efforts are frustrated by greedy office bearers.
Geoffrey Osborn Oceng, the RDC confirmed the incident saying he has notified Thomson Obong, the Chief Administrative Officer to intervene. Oceng added that he has directed the DHO to ensure that she pays the balance to the aggrieved trainees before the end of business on Monday or face arrest and prosecution for corruption, embezzlement and abuse of office.
The Ministry of Health statistics indicates that the COVID-19 pandemic has so far cumulatively killed 346 people with 41,971 infections since March 2020 when the first case of the contagion was reported in the country.