Mbarara hospital medics arrested over drug theft

Three health workers attached to Mbarara regional referral hospital have been arrested in connection with the theft of drugs worth Shs 10 million.

They were arrested barely hours after four boda boda cyclists were also arrested in Mbarara after being found in possession of government drugs from the same hospital.

Police intercepted them on Tuesday night in Katete Central Nyamitanga division in Mbarara municipality. The suspects were stopped by police following a tip off from residents.

The residents had observed the cyclists carrying medicine cartons labelled ‘Government of Uganda’. Once in custody, police concealed the identities of the suspects so they could help with investigations.

10 of the 16 stolen boxes were of antiretroviral drugs, four for paracetamol and two for antibiotics. The health workers arrested Wednesday evening include Leo Atwiine a dispenser, Sixtus Ouma a clinical officer and a stores officer only identified as Mastika.

The three are being held at Mbarara police station pending investigations into the matter. Mbarara district police commander Jaffar Magyezi confirmed their arrest. He says that the drugs will be returned to the hospital after the investigations are concluded.

Mbarara regional referral hospital director Therestine Barigye said that the hospital has learnt of the incident and are working closely with police and the health monitoring team from State House.

He says that the administration has received vital information that could lead to the arrest of people who aided the theft of the drugs from the hospital store.


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