NAMISINDWA: Local Politician Closes Health Center III Over Land Wrangles

By Weswa Ronnie




A former councillor for Bukhabusi Sub County in Namisindwa district has closed Bukhabusi health centre III for one week now leaving patients stranded.



John Washu closed this facility last week following a long land wrangle over ownership of the land where the facility is located for about one year.


Noah Mwelu Weyanga, the Bukhabusi sub county to district councillor said that Washu wrote a letter with forged signatures of community members claiming that the community doesn’t want the health centre. He says the same letter asked health workers to leave the facility threatening to harm them in case they fail.



‘’The letter was written to the District health officer copied to the in charge of Bukhabusi health centre III, LCIII chairperson, CAO, RDC and LCV Namisindwa’’ Mr. Mwelu said.



Mr. Mwelu added that as local leaders they are following this matter to make sure that Washu can face the law and the facility be opened such that people get services.



David Mutenga, the LCIII chairperson of Bukhabusi Sub County said that the wrangles between Washu and the health centre started in May this year when Namisindwa district local government under Result Based financing program fenced the health facility using 30 million shillings.



He added that Washu accused the district of fencing the health centre making his home inaccessible following the blockage of the main road which enters his home.



Mr. Mutenga said that is the main reason which made Washu start using all means of eradicating the health centre.



Peter Kisakye, the chairperson of the Bukhabusi health centre III management committee says that after the In Charge receiving the letter from Washu, he ordered his health workers and the entire staff members to stay away until the conflicts are resolved fearing being harmed by Washu.


He added that since last week, patients who have been coming for services go back home without being attended to since the facility is closed following Washu’s letter.


Stephen Masayi, the acting Namisindwa district health officer says that his office has received lots of letters from Washu claiming that he is the one who donated land for the construction of that health centre in 1999 so he no longer wants the health centre demanding government to relocate and leave his land.



The DHO added that last month, unknown people vandalised the fence of the health centre over unknown reasons. However, when a police sniffer dog was introduced at the scene, it went direct to the home of Washu prompting them to arrest him but was later released on police bond.



Mr Masayi said ‘’according to the law if someone donates land to the government and puts there any plan with land titles, him or grandchildren can’t reclaim the land in future.’’



Jackson Wakwaika, the LCV chairperson of Namisindwa district says that according to district records, that land was donated by John Wabomba to Mbale district local government in 1999 before the creation of Namisindwa district for construction of the health centre but not Washu as he alleges.



When contacted, Washu said that he is the one who lobbied for that health centre when he was the district councillor and also donated the land where the structures have been put but since they blocked the main path he use to access his home, he now wants the government to relocate the health centre.



He denied allegations of closing the health center saying that in his letter he wanted the government to relocate the health centre but not close it.


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