17th Anniversary: MTN Slashes Smartphone prices

MTN CMO, Mapula Bodibe

The First Lady and Minister for Karamoja Affairs Janet Museveni has said she is proud of the work St. Kizito Hospital Matany has been doing for a long time to save lives of Ugandans in Karamoja and the neighbouring districts.

“God put Matany Hospital strategically in Karamoja to save life and we have all the confidence that it will continue to serve the people of Karamoja, order ” she said about the hospital which has been operating since the early 70s.

The First Lady was meeting Matany Hospital Administration team and the School of Nursing and Midwifery Leaders who presented to her situation reports and financial sustainability issues of the hospital.

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This was during her visit to the health facility this week.

She acknowledged that Matany Hospital does a lot more than many other facilities in the country and thanked the hospital administration for stretching their funding to do all they do.

She said her Ministry would explore possibilities of supporting it to continue with the good work it is doing to save life.

The 250-bed rural hospital located in Napak District is among the 33 Private -Not-for-Profit (PNFP) hospitals in the country run under the Uganda Catholic Medical Bureau.

It offers various services including an outpatients’ department, maternity, surgical, medical, pediatric and TB wards, Ante-natal clinic, laboratory, X-ray and ultrasound, plus dental care, orthopedic and physiotherapy units.

It also has an ART clinic with a counselling unit and offers EMTCT and primary eye care services.

Matany hospital also acts as a referral unit for the Karamoja region.

Poor funding

In his report the CEO and Hospital Administrator Br. Günther Nährich highlighted the challenge of sustaining the hospital in the absence of donor funding.

He appreciated Government for the Primary Health Care (PHC) funds that are allocated to Matany Hospital since 1997.

He said other sources of funding for the hospital include user fees and income from the Nurses and Midwifery training school, but the hospital still has a funding gap to sustain its operations.

The challenges he said include keeping the structures efficient, providing the monthly salaries for the employees, providing drugs and equipment plus keeping the nursing and midwifery training school running.

The First Lady was also taken on a guided tour of the hospital by the Medical Superintendent Dr. John Bosco Nsubuga and other members of staff.

At the School of Nursing and Midwifery, she was welcomed by the tutors and students who demonstrated to her some of what they learn in the skills laboratory.

Dr. John Bosco Nsubuga reported that the health training Institution, which currently has a total of 108 students, has been in place for 31 years and needs rehabilitation.

He pointed out the need for a bigger skills laboratory that would accommodate the large number of students and also meet the Ministry of Health standards.

Dr. Nsubuga thanked Mrs. Museveni for the care she has for the people of Karamoja and for always coming in to support Matany hospital’s work.

In her report Sr. Nataline Mowo the Principal Tutor of St. Kizito Hospital Matany School of Nursing and Midwifery said for the last five years their school has registered a success rate of 100 percent and has been rated one of the best three performing HTIs at national level.

She however pointed out some challenges including the need for a midwifery tutor, renovation of school infrastructure and a equipping the school with computers.
Uganda’s leading mobile operator MTN is celebrating 17 years of operations in the country, cost offering subscribers special discounts on a number of smartphones.

The company has slashed prices of several smartphones by up to 30 percent as a way of celebrating its anniversary.

A number of smartphones including Samsung, physician Nokia and LG smartphone brands are part of this promotion that will go on for 17 days.

For example the Samsung Galaxy Tab which previously cost Sh 1, side effects 455,000 can now be purchased at Shs 1,040,000 while the Samsung Galaxy A3 is slashed down to Shs 630,000 from Shs 900,000.

On Wednesday MTN Uganda celebrated 17 years since officially launching its operations in 1998.

From humble beginnings in 1994 back in South Africa, the company is now a leading mobile network operator in the Uganda offering a bouquet of services including mobile, data and fixed line communications plus a catalogue of mobile financial services.

“This important anniversary gives us an opportunity to reflect on the extraordinary achievements over the years, as well as energize us for the road ahead. The industry has changed dramatically – customers know value and are demanding for it,” said MTN’s Chief Marketing Officer, Mapula Bodibe.

“MTN is committed to making our customers’ live a whole lot brighter through continued investment, innovations and development of solutions that deliver tangible value for customers.”

Mapula said while voice remains the dominant service, Ugandans are increasingly embracing the Internet and as a way of promoting data usage, MTN are also offering free data bundles on several smart phones sold.

Officials say since 2009, MTN Uganda has made tremendous strides to improve financial inclusion and access to financial services for customers across Uganda.

Through MTN Mobile Money, the organisation says Uganda has become the leading Mobile Financial Services provider serving over 4.5 million registered users.

“We are delighted to continue being part of Uganda’s amazing story of growth and resilience to succeed, and look forward to being there as we step into the future,” Ms. Mapula concluded.

Through its social responsibility vehicle, ‘MTN Foundation’ has made a significant contribution in the sectors of education, health plus other national priority areas.

In the past, the brand has supported a number of causes in the areas of sports, arts and culture, environment conservation, community development and low cost housing among others.

In 2014, MTN Uganda purchased BAT Uganda’s property and acreage along Jinja road.

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