"Did they want me to travel by foot? I travel by plane, I speak; people listen and donate"
The Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga has lashed out at critics accusing Parliament of lavish expenditures on travel.
Kadaga made her feelings known during a handover ceremony of medical equipment from Coca-Cola to Kamuli General Hospital on Saturday.
Kadaga revealed that in 2013, during the Uganda North American Association (UNAA) she met friends in Philadelphia whom after talking to, donated medical equipment worth millions of shillings, but she was shocked that the media reports about the trip were only negative.
"You the press, I called you here for one reason. For two months, there have been complains why I went to UNAA. Look, this equipment is worth $1.5m, I did not spend a penny but it is here to help Ugandans because I lobbied for it" she said.
Kadaga revealed that during her visit to Medshare International warehouse, Uganda was among the few that had not collected their consignment of medical equipment, partly because of shipping challenges.
"I and other MPs contacted Coca-Cola in the US who agreed to ship the medical equipment. So we did not go there to make noise and party, but to lobby for Uganda" she retorted.
"This equipment costs more than $1.5m but you hear them querying why I travel by plane; did they want me to travel by foot? I travel by plane, I speak; people listen and donate" she added.
Kadaga also highlighted the need to reduce tax on such medical equipment so that more can be delivered.
Maureen Kyomuhendo the Coca-Cola public affairs officer revealed that other sets of the equipment will be delivered to Kakuko and Kalangala Hospitals primarily to address maternal and paediatric challenges.
The event was graced by the Minister of State for Health, Sarah Acheng Opendi, and Minister of State for Karamoja Affairs, Moses Kizige and MPs mostly from Busoga sub-region among other key delegates.