KAMPALA: Dr. Baterana Byarugaba, the embattled Executive Director of Mulago National Referral Hospital, has been interdicted.
This is contained in a March 2, 2022, letter issued by the Health Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Dr. Diana Atwine.
She has asked Dr. Baterana to hand over the office to his deputy, Dr. Rosemary Byanyima, and stay away from the office until advised otherwise.
Pursuant to Section F-s and F-r of the Public Service Standing Orders, 2021, you are hereby interdicted from duty to pave the way for investigations and you will receive half pay with immediate effect until the charges against you have been cleared, the letter reads in part.
During his interdiction, Dr Byarugaba has been blocked from accessing the hospital premises. He is also unable to leave the country without Atwine’s permission.
According to the Public Service Standing Orders, Dr. Byarugaba can only be interdicted for a period of six months. After this, he can either be reinstated or sacked formally.
Emmanuel Tumwebaze, Dr. Byarugaba’s lawyer, says they have filed an injunction with the High Court to block their client’s interdiction.
According to Tumwebaze, Atwine’s orders are unfair since Dr. Byarugaba has not been given a fair hearing.
On Tuesday, the State House Health Monitoring Unit led by Dr. Warren Namara picked up Dr. Baterana on a string of corruption-related charges.
Byarugaba was charged by police with abusing his office, embezzling, fraudulent accounting, and causing financial loss to the country. Preliminary investigations by the HMU show that a total of 28 billion shillings cannot be accounted for at the hospital in the last two years.
He was released on bond on Thursday from Jinja Road Police Station, where he had spent two days. He is expected to report to the station on Wednesday.