By Samuel Mwesigwa
At least 1,039 ghost names have been discovered on the nurses’ payroll. The names were unearthed during last week’s payment of lunch allowances for nurses.
147 ghost health workers received the money under the docket of nurses working under Uganda Police, 40 from Jinja district, 40 from Ntungamo district, and other districts including Kanungu, Kamwenge, Adjumani, Bunyangabu and Kasese.
Uganda has a total of 70,168 nurse registered by the government of Uganda under the Midwife and Nurses Council.
With the revised allowances, qualified nurses who had been getting Shs 3,000 per day for lunch will now be receiving Shs 15,000 whereas nursing assistants who were being paid Shs 2,000 per day have been upgraded to Shs 10,000. At least Shs 70 billion has been budgeted for the allowances annually.
Catherine Bitarakwate Musingwire, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Public Service has given the accounting officers of the affected districts to tender in an explanation not later than the 15th of August which has created tension on dockets of the responsible officers .
“You are requested to explain in writing by 15th of August, 2021 the circumstances under which the attached employees were enrolled onto the lunch allowance. The total amount of the lunch allowance earned over the years “- she said
Musingwire also notes that more than one thousand ghost nurses had been receiving the money yet they are not health workers and don’t work in health facilities.
Jinja District Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) William Kanyesigye said while Jinja has been marked as one of the districts with high ghost beneficiaries, it was done in error and that they have scheduled a meeting for Monday to have this corrected.
He said, the alleged ghosts work in health facilities in the district although he adds he has discovered only one person who is a teacher.
In Ntungamo district, the CAO Nasser Mukiibi says the 20 identified ghosts are not health workers but they are support staff in the health department who work as typists and cleaners.
Miss allocations in government funds are becoming the song of the day. The office of the presidency, has ordered arrest of individuals disguising to be staff of statehouse who have for long extorted money from people seeking government jobs.