Village Health Teams in Kween told to pay for 'free' government bicycles

In the typical rural village, one's most accessible point of contact with the health system is the village health team (VHT). These a volunteer who offer to provide health information, mobilise communities around health solutions and link the sick to health facilities. Two weeks ago, the health ministry distributed bicycles to village health teams in Kween district, among others - to ease their movement. Unfortunately, in some places, the distributors are reportedly exorting the VHTs before handing over the government issued free bicycles.

Stephen Kiplangat, a resident of Kaproron sub-county reports to News-Hapa that the health teams in some areas of Kween district are being required to pay sh2,500, each, in order to get a bicycle. he specifies that these incidents have reported from the in Ngenge and Kwanyiny sub-counties of his district, Kween.

Despite inquiries on why they were being asked to pay the money, Kiplangat says the VHTs did not get satisfactory answers. The same bicycle distribution exercise is reportedly going well in Katanda, Kyabakala and Kirugu villages of Rubirizi district where no money was asked of the VHTs receiving the bikes.

Meanwhile, Godwin Atima in Wandelai sub-county, Nebbi district, reports that residents finally received their long-awaited mosquito nets that the Government is distributing to citizens to help in fighting malaria. Residents in Arua and Maracha districts have also finally received mosquito nets which the government is distributing through VHTs. The only complaint received by News-Hapa about this exercise was from Olali parish, Arua district where women complained that they were made to wait for the nets for the whole weekend, yet they could have been in their gardens. Ben Asidra, a resident of Ogoko sub-county forwarded that particular concern to News-Hapa.

- June 24, 2014
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