REVEALED; Why Opposition MPs were locked out Lubowa Specialized Hospital construction site

In a contentious decision, opposition lawmakers were on Monday  locked out of the Lubowa Specialized Hospital construction site on the basis that they were not cleared by the Italian investor Enrica Pinneti.

The project’s progress has been the subject of intense debate and inquiries concerning accountability and transparency in light of this development.Surprisingly their denial from entering comes just a few days when the Parliament had passed Shs2.7Bn to the Ministry of Health to use for the supervision works at the same facility.

In a daring effort spearheaded by Leader of the Opposition Joel Ssenyonyi, legislators went to the Lubowa Specialized Hospital building site to carry out an exhaustive examination and personally evaluate the project’s development.

However, their attempts were unsuccessful since they were denied access, which raised questions about accountability and transparency in relation to the hospital’s development.

“As we wait for the appropriate authorities to unlock the gate so we may continue our inquiry, we are here to perform our job. The Ministry of Health is in charge of this facility, and their major responsibility is to protect public safety and preserve peace and order. We feel secure enough without the need for police protection, though we do appreciate their care. They are welcome to offer security and watch the proceedings, though, if they insist,” Ssenyonyi said.

“It’s important to remember that police officers are also taxpayers and that the hospital will be available to assist them should they require medical assistance.”

Ssenyonyi claimed that because they had permission from Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng, the Minister of Health, their trip to Lubowa was completely lawful. It’s important to note that Dr. Aceng was supposed to go with them, but she couldn’t because of a cabinet meeting, which happens every Monday.

Authorities cautioned them to always obtain prior authorization from senior security personnel, even with this clearance. Ssenyonyi stated that their visit was intended to evaluate the project’s progress. They are interested in keeping an eye on the hospital’s progress because the budget allots a sizeable amount of money each year for its construction.

“An enormous amount of money is given to this location annually. A supplemental budget of Shs2.7 billion was just last December, indicating that work was still being done in this area. We decided to visit and evaluate the progress as a result. But we were shocked to find out that security guards had inquired about our authorization from Madam Pinneti when we arrived,” he said.

“This project was initially scheduled for completion in 2022, but it has continually been delayed, prompting Parliament to intervene and investigate the ongoing situation,” he stated.

It is important to emphasize that there is a trend to this latest episode. In 2019, there was a noteworthy incident in which Dr. Diana Atwine, the Permanent Secretary, and Dr. Ruth Aceng, the Minister of Health, had difficulties when trying to visit the same Lubowa Hospital construction site. This historical background highlights the continuous difficulties and disputes about site access and poses important queries regarding accountability and transparency in the administration of such initiatives.