By Patrick Jaramogi
Jinja –Uganda; Early this week, TheSpy Uganda broke this investigative story on how a “Mzungu”, self-acclaimed American medic had been dragged to court by two mothers over the death of their children at her facility in Jinja.
Renee Bach, an American Citizen from Bedford in Virginia has run the ‘Serving His Children’ (SHC) facility in Masese I village Jinja for the last 9 years. The latest we have unearthed is that over 600 children are feared to have died from her facility in the recent 9 years. Scores of former staff, and several of Renee Bach’s friends, majority of whom are American citizens who talked to Spy Uganda, said they will not be surprised if the number shoots to 1000+.
Kelsey who worked within Jinja, and did Bible Study with her, acted fast after she got to know that she was not doing things properly. Kelseyn, an acquaintance to Renee who is a Co- Founder of the Abide Family Center in Jinja along with a group of medical missionaries all in Jinja who were trying to hold Renee accountable, reported to Jinja Health officials and to police in 2015. The District Health Officer closed the facility in 2015, but many deaths had been reported. Spy Uganda established that Renee then relocated to the nearest Mayuge District and partnered with Kigandalo Health Center IV.
According to a former staff who talked to our investigative team, a minimum of 12 children died at the SHC per month. “Just imagine losing 12 children each month for 9 years! What does that amount too?” mused one former staff. Another friend noted: “that without benefit of a medical background, Renee initiatively devoted all available resources into caring for each gravely ill child who came through SHC doors. However, she soon came to realize that, while nursing the children back to health was paramount, more needed to be done if the cycle of malnutrition was to be broken.”
Renee in a writing that she posted said: “I slowly came to understand the medical causes of malnutrition through research, tutoring from local doctors and nutritionists, and much prayer.” Mothers from as far as Namutumba, Manafwa, Kaliro, Iganga, Soroti, Moroto, Mbale were convinced by Renee to bring their malnourished and sick children for treatment at her facility. In a Miscellaneous Case NO.003 OF 2019, The Women’s Probono Initiative (WPI), Gimbo Zubeda and Kakai Annet have dragged Renee Bach and Serving His Children (SHC) to court for violating the right of the 2nd and 3rd respondent Applicant’s children’s right to proper medical care when they operated and purported to treat them in an illegal ‘medical facility’ in Masese I, Jinja District without a license contrary to Articles 34 (3), 8 (A), and 45. Gimbo and Kakai are among the hundreds of parents who lost their loved children in an illegal medical facility operated by un licensed staff. Also check: http://www.spyuganda.com/american-quack-medic-renee-bach-dragged-to-court-over-child-deaths/ The case that comes up before the Jinja High Court on March 12, 2019, seeks to order for closure of SHC with immediate effect and for awarding of general damages to the 2nd and 3rd applicants for violation of their human rights.
Renee Bach leaves Country
We tried in vain to get comments from Renee Bach, but known telephone numbers remained off. Our quick search with our sources at Immigrations in Entebbe revealed that She flew out of the country in late September and hasn’t yet returned. Now with the case logging, it is not sure whether she will return or whether she will be extradited from the United States to answer these charges.
Ministry of Health swings into action
Spy Uganda had a chat with the tough Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Dr. Diana Atwine. “It’s unfortunate I am currently out of the country. But something must be done. Let me forward to our team to verify,” she said.
Spy Uganda visited the American Embassy in Kampala and tried to get access to the US Ambassador to Uganda, Her Excellence Deborah R. Malac, but the efforts were futile. Senior US Embassy officials whom we eventually talked to, were cagey, but later demanded that a formal communication be made to be responded to.
In reply, the US Embassy Kampala Information Assistant, Dorothy Nanyonga said: “Greetings Patrick, Thank you for your email. At this time, due to the lapse in appropriations we are not able to respond to media inquiries.”
Renee Bach, a resident of Bedford in Virginia, first arrived in Uganda alone in September 2007, she was just 18 years old then. Months before her first arrival in Uganda, Renee had graduated from high school without a clue about what she wanted to do with her life. She had always been involved in some sort of volunteer service, from in-country mission trips in high school to working on her family’s farm, Many Blessings Farm, and helping run the farm’s nonprofit hypotherapy practice. Hypotherapy is a type of therapy that involves working with horses. According to our investigations, Renee had also been a nanny for years and loved children. Spy Uganda established that the organization (SHC) is something of a family business, with Bach’s relatives taking on some roles. Her mother is SHC’s U.S. director, and her sister, Eileen, 22, works with the organization’s marketing and social media team from time to time. However, we found out that the majority of employees are Ugandans, though casuals. Reports are rife that Renee has been touting children from remote villages in Namutumba, Soroti, Mbale, Iganga and elsewhere, promising them ‘ heaven’. “She used to go to Jinja Main Hospital as early as 5am when the Doctor are done with their rounds and would admitted children to her facility in Masese. These would die due to lack of proper medical care and treatment,” said a former staff. Ends