The Minister for Health, Hon. Dr. Jane Ruth Aceng Ocero, has flagged off the distribution of 196 bicycles that were donated to the community health extension workers (CHEWs) by the Ministry of Health.
The Minister appreciated the CHEWs for their work in Lira City, which has had a positive impact on the community. She urged the CHEWs to take care of the bicycles and use them for their intended purpose.
“I want you to add more knowledge because in the area of health, every day is a day of learning,” said Minister Aceng.
The donations have started with Lira City and Lira District, and will be rolled out to other parts of the country in the coming weeks.
The Acting Town Clerk, Ochari Lillian, said that the bicycles will be distributed directly to the CHEWs. She added that the Ministry will be monitoring the use of the bicycles to ensure that they are used for their intended purpose.
Dr. Ronald Miria Oceetre, the Health Assistant Commissioner for Health Services in charge of Health Promotions and Strategic Health Communication in the Ministry of Health, applauded Minister Aceng for lobbying for the bicycles from World Bicycle Relief. He said that the bicycles will help the CHEWs to reach more people and provide better health care services.
“We hope these bicycles will support the community extension workers in terms of transport,” said Dr. Miria. “As the Ministry, we support them with 150,000 shillings monthly. And as we are scaling up to other parts of the country, we want to continue with the payment of CHEWs so that they continue with their work uninterrupted.”
Regional Director for East Africa, Maureen Kolengo, said that World Bicycle Relief has so far distributed about 800,000 bicycles across 21 countries. She said that she is confident that the bicycles will improve the lives of the CHEWs in Lira City and Lira District.
“We know these bicycles will improve the lives of the CHEWs, whereby 50 percent are female,” said Ms. Kolengo.
The distribution of the bicycles was attended by the Lira Resident City Commissioner, Lawrence Emmy Egole, and other local officials.