MINISTER for Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Dr Dorothy Gwajima has suspended five health workers of Nansio Ukerewe District Hospital to pave way for investigations into drug theft allegations at the health facility.
The five health personnel are among the six who were brought before the court charged with theft of medicines worth 200m/-, of which one of the accused pleaded guilty and was ordered to pay 100m/-, while the rest were reinstated. The investigations will involve public service ethics organs, councils and professional bodies.
The workers have been suspended following the directives by the Heath Minister Dr Gwajima after she toured the hospital recently and was informed by Ukerewe District Commissioner Mr Cornel Magembe that the decision to reinstate the health personnel was questionable.
“According to the DC, the health personnel were involved in theft acts that have made their service questionable ...how come they have been reinstated,” the minister queried.
During his tour of Nansio Hospital, the minister learnt that there were still some shortfalls in drugs procurement system, thus she concurred with the concern by the DC.
Dr Gwajima, however, directed Ukerewe District Director Ms Esther Chaula to suspend the five health personnel and ensure they appear before the public service ethics committee, councils and professional bodies to see whether they deserve to continue serving the people.
“The court had given the ruling as per the law and they paid, but I direct the District Director to continue overseeing disciplinary action, including taking them to their councils and professional bodies for them to investigate and take appropriate measures,” she said.
According to Mwanza Regional Medical Officer, Dr Thomas Rutachunzibwa, the health personnel have been suspended to allow disciplinary measures to be taken against them.