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Soroti Maternity Ward Remains Redundant Over Shoddy Work :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Soroti Maternity Ward Remains Redundant Over Shoddy Work

A maternity ward at Awal-wal Health Centre II in Soroti district has remained closed more than a year after its construction. Located in Gweri Sub County, the facility built at the cost of 85 million Shillings in the 2015/2016 financial year has remained non-operational due to substandard construction work. Both the community and local council authority rejected its commissioning in 2016 after realising the facility was built without a placenta disposal pit, drainage lines, bathrooms, attendants kitchen and shelter.

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A maternity ward at Awal-wal Health Centre II in Soroti district has remained closed more than a year after its construction.

 

Located in Gweri Sub County, the facility built at the cost of 85 million Shillings in the 2015/2016 financial year has remained non-operational due to substandard construction work.

 

Both the community and local council authority rejected its commissioning in 2016 after realising the facility was built without a placenta disposal pit, drainage lines, bathrooms, attendant's kitchen and shelter.

 

A standard maternity ward is expected to be built with a placenta disposal pit where the placentas of mothers who have given birth are disposed of.

 

Joseph Eregu, a resident of Gweri Sub County says lack of a functional maternity facility has forced women to trek over 20km while going for antenatal care visit and giving birth. Eregu described this as time consuming and a health risk to the expectant mothers. He adds that that the district authority should complete this facility to ensure the services are brought nearer to their expectant mothers.

 

More than 1,000 expectant mothers visit this facility monthly.

 

Jorem Opian, the councillor representing Gweri Sub County blamed district the engineering department for failing to provide technical guides to the contractor. He says this has crippled health service delivery in this area.

 

Susan Apolot, the female district councillor representing Asuret and Soroti sub counties, says the facility was poorly built with transparent glasses which are not technically supposed to be used in a maternity ward.

 

Margaret Amongi, the district secretary for finance wondered how a maternity ward could be built without a placenta disposal pit, blood draining lines and bathrooms.

 

Amongi wants Jamara and Onencan Engineering Works, the private company contracted to construction the facility blacklisted over shoddy work.

 

Calvin Elenyu, the district secretary for health says there was laxity by the technical staff at the district.

 

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Elenyu says there was no value for money in the entire project and the district has already approved another plan to rehabilitate the facility.

 

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Cue out: ...this mini maternity."//

 

Denis Ocung, the district engineer admitted the anomalies at the beginning of the entire project. He says the then technical people in the engineering department failed to offer technical guidance to the contractor.

 

Joseph Balisanyuka, Soroti district Chief Administrative Officer, says Baylor International, a non-government organisation that has been advocating for the enhancement of health service delivery in the area, has volunteered to install the missing facilities at the Maternity ward.

 

He says they already completed negotiation with Baylor to consider completing the construction.

  

The same mistake has also rendered a maternity ward at Ocok-can Health Centre II non-operational since it also lacks a placenta pit, bathrooms and drainage lines. This maternity ward was also constructed by the same contractor, Jamara and Onencan Engineering at the cost of shillings 85 million Shillings.

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