The Buhaguzi County Member of Parliament in Kikuube District, Mr Stephen Aseera, has proposed that government increases Village Health Team (VHT) members stipend from Shs10,000 to Shs100,000 per member.
Speaking during a plenary sitting on Tuesday, Mr Aseera argued that the VHTs’ plight should be considered owing to the role they play in bringing health services closer to people.
“Majority of the population lives far from health centres and the VHTs bridge that gap. VHTs participate in the management of local health services including home visits, health education, management of common illnesses and follow up on pregnant mothers,” he said.
Mr Aseera said despite the VHTs visible contribution, they remain poorly facilitated in the performance of their duties resulting in a high turnover of members from the programme.
“A study by the Ministry of Health in 2014 indicated a lack of regular monthly pay as a barrier to their performance,” he added.
Cognizant that Mr Aseera’s motion carried financial consequences to the national resource envelop, Bugiri Municipality Member of Parliament, Mr Asuman Basalirwa, suggested that Prime Minister, Ms Robinah Nabbanja, takes charge of the proposals.
“According to Article 193 (b) of the Constitution, we cannot we cannot proceed in this manner because the motion creates a charge on the Consolidated Fund. Government should pick it up and proceed from there.” Said Mr Basalirwa.
In her response, Ms Nabbanja, promised to have cabinet reconsider an earlier parliament resolution on the enhancement of remunerations of Village Health Team (VHT) members.
Ms Nabbanja who is also the Kakumiro District Woman Member of Parliament, said such a request was brought to the 10th Parliament and discussed in cabinet in 2017 but that since then government had been financially constrained.
“Government was unable to bring to it here. Let me take it back and report in a month’s time,” she said.