Kampala – The Federation of Uganda Medical Interns (FUMI) has issued a one-week ultimatum for the government to fulfill its commitment of paying their allowances for the months of October, November and December 2023.
The resolution was made during a general assembly held on 20th October 2023 in Kampala, when they also reviewed planned industrial action following the partial fulfillment by the Ministry of Health through release of funds for allowances to hospitals.
According to Judith Nalukwago, the Federation’s Secretary General the assembly also resolved that their planned industrial action be postponed to the end of October to allow time for engagement to process the already released allowances.
“Internship began in August but the quarter is supposed to start in July. When the Ministry of Finance released funds to the Ministry of health it excluded the allowances for medical interns because by that time we were not yet deployed. So that means that there was an accumulated arrears of August and September which are the two months of first quarter and they were added on top of the second quarter from October to December, making a total of five months,” said Musa Lumumba the President FUMI who added that the Ministry of Finance has released funds for only two months.
In August, 2021, President Yoweri Museveni directed that medical interns should be paid a monthly allowance of Shs2.5 million Shillings.
In a letter addressed to the Prime Minister and the Ministries of Health, Finance and Public service, President Museveni said the medical interns should be paid the stated monies because they work long hours.
It is not the first time Medical interns are threatening a strike due to poor working conditions. In November 2022, medical interns in pharmacy, nursing and midwifery departments gave the government an ultimatum of 72 days to listen and provide a remedy to their grievances or else they lay down their tools.