The National Drug Authority (NDA), has directed all private pharmacies operating within government hospitals to vacate with immediate effect.
Abiaz Rwamwiri, the NDA public relations manager noted that they are implementing a presidential directive issued in 2019 to NDA through the ministry of health.
“This is to implement a presidential directive to NDA through the Minister of Health. The closure is for all private pharmacies in all government hospitals and it takes immediate effect today,” Rwamwiri said.
Adding, “… I know those pharmacies entered into MOUs with these hospitals. In 2019, the President directed the MOH to close private pharmacies in Gov’t hospitals, he later directed to stay implementing his directive he has now directed that action be taken.”
The implementation of the 2019 presidential directive, comes at the backdrop of the arrest, release and interdiction of the Mulago National Referral Hospital, Dr Byaruhanga Baterana by the State House Health Monitoring Unit.
Dr Baterana was charged by police with abuse of office, embezzlement, fraudulent accounting and cause of financial loss to the country.
Speaking to the media, Dr Warren Namara the State House Health Monitoring Unit director said that Baterana is being investigated for mismanaging Ugx28.8 billion.
Meanwhile, the ministry of health permanent secretary, Dr Diana Atwine ordered Dr. Baterana who is also being accused of allowing private pharmacies to operate with in Mulago hospital, to handover office to his deputy Dr Rosemary Byanyima.
Dr Atwine also barred Dr Baterana from leaving the country without her written permission.
Asked on whether the implementation of the directive has anything to do with Baterana’s arrest and interdiction, Rwamwiri said, “Whereas this is true, it is not related to the cases of Mulago Hospital officials.”