President Yoweri Museveni has directed Frank Tumwebaze, the minister for Agriculture, Animal Industry, and Fisheries to allocate Turkish firm, Beyler Group 15 acres of land in Entebbe for the construction of a hospital.
In his June 20 letter to Tumwebaze, Museveni says the Turkish Investment Group has committed to building a modern private hospital in Uganda.
"They intended to promote medical tourism in Uganda. The more of such hospitals we can have, the better for our health sector," read Museveni's letter.
Adding that, "I, therefore, direct you to allocate them land from the agriculture land in Entebbe for this purpose."
The development comes over a month after Museveni met a six-man delegation of Beyler led by their CEO Dr Hulusi Söğütlü on May 25 at State House, Entebbe.
During the meeting, the officials expressed interest in investing in the country's agriculture, health, water, and hitech defence systems mainly drones (unmanned aerial vehicles). The officials told Museveni they needed 15 acres of land to set up a hospital in Entebbe and Kampala areas. They also want to set up among others; a coffee processing factory to roast and grind beans, a radiotherapy center in Mbarara, and a factory that manufactures water and oil meters.
The group told Museveni that they have already set up a PCR diagnostic center for COVID-19, tuberculosis, HIV, and gonorrhea in Bugolobi, Kampala. Museveni promised to look into their proposals. The ministry of Agriculture land in Entebbe municipality currently houses its head offices, directorates, and agencies namely the National Agricultural Research Organisation (NARO) and National Animal Genetic Resources Centre and Data Bank (NAGRC&DB).
This will not be the first time the government is providing free land for the construction of a private specialized hospital. In March 2019, parliament approved the request by the ministry of Finance to issue promissory notes for the construction of the International Specialised hospital in Lubowa to a tune of $379.71m (about Shs 1.393 trillion). The government has so far injected Shs 667 billion into the project, which was expected to reduce the number of Ugandans seeking treatment abroad.
Enrica Pinetti, the director of the proposed Lubowa hospital promised to construct the facility within two years and run it for six years before passing it over to the government. However, to date, the project is still at the foundation level, three years after its start.
Sitting on 32 hectares of land located in Lubowa, Wakiso district, the hospital is expected to have 54 oncology beds, 27 infectious disease beds, 27 medical beds, 16 VIP beds, eight ICU beds, as well as 60 outpatient beds, 54 surgery beds, 27 pediatrics beds, 27 Obstetrics and gynaecology beds, 16 intensive care, 8 neo-natal ICU beds and 11 operating theatres.