UMA condemns arrest of Dr. Byarugaba Baterana

The Uganda Medical Association (UMA) has criticised the arrest of the Mulago Referral Hospital executive director Dr Byarugaba Baterana by the State House Health Monitoring Unit.

Through his lawyers, Mulago spoke out on his arrest by the State House Health Monitoring Unit. Baterana was arrested with his other six officials from Mulago and detained.

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On Wednesday, the State House Health Monitoring Unit director, Dr Warren Namara, informed journalists that Byarugaba’s arrest arises from the ongoing investigation into shs28.8 billion allegedly spent by the national referral hospital but unaccounted for.

However, his lawyer stated that police picked Mulago Executive Director from his office in order to record a statement only to be arrested, and they detained him later.

When reporters asked his lawyer about the allegations of unaccounted funds, the lawyer stated that the Mulago hospital boss is not accountable to the State House Health Monitoring Unit.

“These are economical matters, and as we are aware that the Executive Director, Dr Baterana, is only accountable to the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament, Ministry of Finance or Auditor General. Therefore, we are wondering why the State House Health Monitoring Unit team is arresting him over such matters, yet he is not accountable to them,” Kamagara said.

When journalists asked the lawyer about his arrest, the lawyer replied that the State House Health Monitoring Unit wrote to Dr Baterana to provide them with some information, he availed it to them.

They wrote a letter to him in which they requested him to appear in their office, but they gave him a time of one day only, which was not enough for him to get prepared mentally.

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In reply to their letter, we wrote back to them, requesting to them for one week time so that we can prepare, but they never responded until yesterday, when they went and arrested him from his office, said the lawyer.

The State House Health Monitoring Unit director, Dr Warren Namara, had earlier on Wednesday stated that their efforts to ask Dr Baterana to present himself in order to answer the queries regarding the unaccounted shs28.8bilion were futile until he was arrested on Tuesday.