By Mike Ssegawa
The Medical Board is on the spot after it failed to approve for the treatment of Mukono Municipality MP Betty Nambooze’s illness.
Nambooze who is expected to return to Uganda on Friday, is entitled to medical treatment on Parliament’s bill, but, the medical board has to give a green light for a parliament to pay such bills.
However, in an unfair development, Watchdog understands for three weeks, the Board refused to clear Nambooze’s notification to seek medication abroad.
In the process, she took tests at Kampala Imaging Centre and treated at both Church of Uganda Hospital Mukono and Kampala International Medical Centre before Nambooze made a decision to fly to South Africa at her own cost contrary to Parliament’s welfare privileges which entitle her to full medical cover.
The Mukono MP who has been down for one and half months was advised by doctors, friends and relatives including Parliament Speaker Rebecca Kadaga, to seek treatment immediately before her situation runs out of control.
Fearing for Kyanjo repeat
At the back of their mind was what happened to former Makindye West MP Hussein Kyanjo who in similar circumstances waited for months for the Medical Board to approve his medical trip before he could seek treatment. In the process, Kyanjo almost lost his speech, and today lives with the repercussion of the illness.
The Medical Board unfortunately has been selectively picking who deserves emergency clearance and who doesn’t.
Watchdog understands that several NRM or friendly legislators or government officials get clearances in a matter of hours if they have emergency health cases.
In Kyanjo and Nambooze’s cases however, the Medical Board has dragged its feet, introducing unnecessarily procedures that are hardly followed for anyone who is not seen as critical to government.
Nambooze had to wait for three weeks in what can be interpreted as delay tactics to worsen the patient’s situation.
The Mukono MP flew to South Africa in time to get specialized treatment after she received some treatment at Church of Uganda hospital in Mukono. Speaker Rebecca Kadaga who was among friends that encouraged Nambooze to take her health as first priority, secured air tickets for the Mukono legislator from Parliament.
“Kadaga assisted her a lot. She is a good woman indeed,” Nambooze aide Arthur Mugabi told Watchdog.
In South Africa
In Johannesburg, she was booked into Life Brenthurst Hospital under the care of a Ugandan doctor.
“They wanted her to get money late and reach there with rotten intestines when nothing useful could be done,” Mugabi told Watchdog.
In another development sources say the Medical Board has summoned Nambooze’s doctor Dr Bayiga on Thursday to ask why he thinks her case cannot be handled by the “able doctors and consultants at the National referral hospital” of Mulago now located at Kiruddu.
Nambooze has a special medical condition which makes her body produce toxic materials. Somehow her body has been producing acid while at the same time she has low sugar termed as Hypoglcemia.
The doctors are investigating what consumes the sugars in Nambooze’s body, while producing acid at the same time.