VHTs Protest Delayed Payment for Indoor Residual Spraying Exercise

Several Village Health Team – VHTs members in Arua are up in arms over the delayed payment of their allowances for the Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS) Exercise.

The Village Health Teams were involved in the that was launched last month in the district to reduce the high malaria burden in the area. Records from the District Health Officer show that at least 36,470 household structures have been sprayed during the exercise.

According to the guidelines for the programme, each VHT member was entitled to  22,000 Shillings for each of the 24 days of the activity. However, the VHTs told Uganda Radio Network that they are yet to receive the allowances which were meant to facilitate their work.

Alex Orodriyo, one of the affected VHTs in Eruba Parish, says that they have complained to their supervisors over the delayed payments in vain. He notes that the district health officials avoided them on the final day of the exercise when they expected the payments to be made.

Geoffrey Ongwach, another VHT says that some service providers who supplied them with meals during the exercise have been demanding payments.

Gasper Drani, the Arua district Malaria Focal Point person acknowledged the delay in the payment of the allowances but blamed it on the tight guidelines that require the VHTs to be paid using their mobile money accounts.

Paul Bishop Drileba, the acting Arua District Health Officer explains that all the processes for payment have been fulfilled but they are waiting for the Ministry of Finance to issue a payment authorization letter. He further called for calm from the VHTs saying their matter would be sorted.

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