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MPs question $379m govt support to hospital investor

Artistic impression of the proposed International Hospital

Artistic impression of the proposed International Hospital

Members of parliament have tasked government to explain why they have decided to offer financial assistance to an investor for the construction an International Specialized hospital.

Government plans to guarantee $379 million (about Shs 1.3 trillion) to an investor for the construction of the hospital in Lubowa, Wakiso district through a promissory loan. 

The investor Finasi International, a major member of the Finasi-RoKo consortium will construct the hospital, and the government will repay the money over time. 

Now MPs sitting on the National Economy committee, want government to explain how the developer was selected and why government does not take lead in the construction and how the facility will be managed by the investor.

Busongora North MP William says that their major concern is that the proposal looks suspicious since the company did not go through any form of bidding process. He also says government plans to exempt the specialized hospital workers from paying tax.

Betty Nambooze, the Mukono County North MP demanded to know in whose interest is government constructing the hospital, yet national referral hospitals are grappling with limited finances. 

 
"Can having that idea qualify you to be an investor? Because you see, he’s only bringing an idea. Why isn’t Uganda building this hospital by the way because we’re footing the bill? So why is not us as a country to construct the hospital and we offer ourselves this service? Two, we’ve heard that there was another investor who had quoted the price at $60m and then there was another one who had $120m. Why did we have to leave out these two and then settle for the one with the highest price of $379 million.?" said Nambooze. 

David Bahati, the minister of Finance in charge of planning said that the proposal will help government construct the hospital and government will not be strained as they will pay it back as a loan over time.

He said this will ensure that the project does not create a liability on the side of government, but most importantly, the developer will accredit the hospital to international standards, recruit ably and put in place a world standard facility. Bahati, says the advantage is that government will rely on the $189m (about 694bn) it spends annually on treatment abroad to construct the facility.

"We’ll use the money we said we have, and have for the completion of the project. We shall issue these promissory needs at every stage of the completion of the works that we have agreed upon; and also the works we shall be certified by an engineer. So this is the arrangement, and this arrangement is comfortable for us, does not create a liability on us, it’s a multi-year commitment we’re using and we’re using it in many ways including the development of a government campus." said Bahati. 

Government approved the construction of the hospital, to be operated as a world-class internationally accredited facility to treat conditions for which Ugandans have been traveling abroad. It will have a 264-bed specialized healthcare capacity, inclusive of an 80-bed oncology centre, doctors and nurses school and accommodation, a 9MW powerhouse and the proposed national ambulance control centre.

The government had however sought authorization of parliament to issue promissory notes of up to$379 million for the project designed as a public-private partnership following a proposal by the investor.

Construction of the hospital has delayed since 2014 due to challenges of land ownership and fund guarantees. In the agreement, the government is expected to take over the hospital after 10 years. 

The company, Finasi has reportedly innovated and developed specific know-how in the healthcare field delivering state of the art facilities and providing solutions and added value services to its clients. Some of its projects are; Sharg Al Nile hospital in Khartoum, Famboni general hospital in Comoros among others.

Comments

+1 #1 Concerned Ugandan 2019-02-19 12:09
The decision-making process in this country leaves a lot to be desired! 'Investors' are never taken through any transparent processes where they can be independently evaluated.

This is the reason why well over ten years later Nakawa-Naguru project remains largely a bush!

It is now not clear whether government wanted to redevelop the land or introduce a forest in the city! Meanwhile the movers of the project lined themselves up for hefty 'compensation' claims for virtually no clear plan! When will we learn that the money being played with is not personal money??
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+1 #2 Lakwena 2019-02-19 14:01
In other words, This country is up for grab (capture by mafias). Otherwise, what an irony!

The same government claims that there is no money to improve on public medical facilities (Health budget reduction); but here it is: wants to guarantee $379 million towards a private hospital.

Ugandans should be reminded how before the 2007 CHOGM the way Speke Resort Munyonyo was heavily capitalized by government. But later withdrew interest.

It is the same way, in cahoot with fake investors, someone/people (the power that be), want to capitalize their private Hospital using public resources.
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+1 #3 Jackson Okello 2019-02-19 14:57
Hmmm. We do not need this lunacy.

We can do better if we spend money on upgrading existing hospitals. These Fenosi thieves are hear to grab our money.

Remember the loan that built Kirudu Hospital. My question here is: Where is Besigye's people's government , what are they saying on all this?
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+3 #4 Abalang 2019-02-19 15:53
So who then is the investor--the government or the so-called investor?

If the government has the money to finance the construction of the hospital, why then do we need an investor?

How on earth can the government og Uganda allow these so-called investors, or really rip-offs to come to Uganda with nothing and ask Uganda to give them money for their own investments?
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0 #5 Akot 2019-02-19 19:25
Jackson Okello, thanks!

After Dr Besigye, there is no more opposition leadership in his party!

Remember, Musevnei addressed opposition leaders & called them to UNITE around him & non stood up to defend individual parties, but they all looked up with admiration at Museveni!
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0 #6 Akot 2019-02-19 19:33
Abalang, agreed, but,

Uganda belongs to Museveni who can do as he wishes! The question is; how will Ugandans go on without Museveni who is not eternal & will 1 day die?

How many who were 30 years in 1986 still live & how do their children live?

What will be the next 30 years for today 80% under 35 & their children as there is no way Museveni will leave & Ugandans are not prepared for after him?
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0 #7 rubangakene 2019-02-19 22:26
ARE YOU REALLY SERIOUS?

The nerve of these people stinks to high heavens; just imagine the fanfare in which the President welcomed these people; do they think Ugandans are that stupid, my ass?

The next time these lot touch soil in Entebbe, they should be arrested or deported forthwith. Who the hell do they think we are?

How many times have we been taken to the cleaners, eh? Another one said he could build grain silos, instead he built a 5-star hotel; there are just so many cases to list here.

I am shocked, annoyed at the "insult" to our intelligence. Ugandans must resist these "fruit pickers" with all available means. USICHEZE NA KICHWA YA WATU YA UGANDA, HAPA NI KAZI TUU!
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0 #8 Kelly 2019-02-20 09:06
Dear Observer,
I posted a humble reaction questioning whether anything done in this country from UPE, USE, Health centres II and III, the roads and CHOGM hotels are meant for the benefit of the masses in this country, or rather to feed into the pockets of the technocrats and rulers, but you didn't publish it.

I wonder whether that was out of context or it was a technical error!!!!
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0 #9 Abalang 2019-02-20 15:41
I have never believed that Uganda, and Africa, in general, is poor. What we suffer from, is designed poverty.

We are told we are poor and need aid, but the countries that give us aid come as investors and then we give them the money investment, and the beneficiaries are the thieving investors and the corrupt individuals who, by virtue of the offices they hold, have the means to squander, selfishly, the resources of our country, yet the governance structures and the individuals in there, offer no recourse for the people, some being culpable to the vice.

If someone can come from China, India, America etc to Uganda and make money out of this "poor country" that cannot operate without aid, how come Uganda's cannot make money too in their own country, except a few connected individuals?

This hospital is another scheme for pretentious help to poor Uganda, but in reality, it is not founded first and foremost on benefiting Ugandans.
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0 #10 rubangakene 2019-02-22 00:18
What Uganda needs is a dedicated and independent technical Compliance and Due Diligence Technical team to appraise all investors before falling headlong for their dollars!

They will check track records of these pretenders, criminal records in the global business forum among other things.

The said investors should show their have the will and deposit said investment monies with agreed bank before embarking on "deceptions".
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