Members of Parliament on the National Economy Committee, Health Minister Jane Ruth Aceng and Health Ministry Permanent Secretary Dr Diana Atwine have been blocked from accessing the construction site of the International Specialised Hospital of Uganda (ISHU) in Lubowa.
The officials and legislators had on Tuesday gone to inspect the site. However, they were welcomed by the presence of security led by Local Defence Unit (LDU).
After being blocked, Dr Aceng expressed dismay saying that their visit was only meant to ascertain the progress of the project.
Early this year, Parliament approved a loan guarantee of Shs 1.4 trillion (about $378m) to Finasi/Roko Construction Ltd, a special purpose vehicle (SPV) for the construction of the International Specialised Hospital of Uganda (ISHU) in Lubowa, Wakiso district.
However, there has not been smooth progress of the project due to the introduction of another player a Chinese firm, Power China Guizhou Engineering co. Ltd as the civil works contractor, but also allegations that up to $86 million meant for the project is already missing.
A few weeks ago Aceng ran to President Yoweri Museveni seeking his intervention in the controversies surrounding the construction of the hospital.
Muhakanizi speaks out
In a letter dated August 2, 2019, the Ministry of Finance Permanent Secretary Keith Muhakanizi told the Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah that government handed over the construction site to the Project company [Finasi/ Roko Construction SPV Limited] and that its no longer in its hands so government officials cannot therefore, move on and off the site at will.
“As guided by the Deputy Attorney General when he appeared before the committee on National Economy on August 1, 2019, issues relating to the construction site at Lubowa are the subject pending litigation. Accordingly, government officials cannot be deliberating let alone entering upon the site which is the subject of the pending litigations.”