By Jonathan Ugbal
Policemen Thursday morning in Obudu local government area of northern Cross River State met stiff resistance from indigenes of Ohong village while trying to arrest a team of alleged fake medical personnel discharging medical services to the community.
CrossRiverWatch gathered that the alleged fake doctors have been operating in a Primary Healthcare facility in Ohong for over a fortnight now and in very shabby conditions using crude methods and when alerted by some citizens, policemen in the Obudu division in the company of the Community Relations Officer, Emmanuel Akwagiobe decided to sweep in and arrest them, a mission that was aborted.
According to Akwagiobe, “The community elders and youths mobilized and refused the policemen taking these guys away so they can be verified by the state ministry of health as certified medical practitioners, we had to change strategy and withdraw in order to avert further crisis.”
Sources say the team which is suspected to have come from Enugu state connived with a nurse who is in charge of the facility, Gertrude Ayeni, to carry out surgical procedures and other medical services on over 20 persons with a certain percentage of the charges paid to her for her troubles.
Nurse Ayeni in a bid to prove her non complicity in the matter claimed that the community had invited the team to come set up shop for a medical outreach program in the PHC in Ohong. Nurse Getrude Ayeni also said that she took the ‘doctors’ to the Local Government Chairman, Mr. Emmanuel Ugbe who allegedly gave them approval and clearance to commence the medical outreach.
She argued that since the employees of the Primary Health Care Agency were still under the supervision of the Local Government, she had to take instruction on what to do from the Chairman. CrossRiverWatch was yet to reach the Chairman at the time of filing this report.
The State Commissioner for Health Dr. Inyang Asibong when contacted, said she was not aware of any medical outreach in Ohong or any part of Obudu at the moment. The Commissioner promised to immediately intervene to find out the true position of things.
CrossRiverWatch later gathered that the Commissioner later contacted the DPO which led to the directive to the DPO to invite the nurse at the PHC facility and the ‘fake doctors’ to the police station.
Police sources have also confided in CrossRiverWatch that it is the Chairman of Council that is encouraging the nurse at the PHC facility not to honor their invitation and also to produce the ‘fake doctors’ at the station. But the Chairman had not been reached for a reaction as at press time.
The Coordinator of the Primary Healthcare Unit, Christiana Akeke could not be reached as at the time of going to press also but, Dr. Betta told CrossRiverWatch that when she contacted Akeke, she said she was not aware of the situation.
It will be recalled that CrossRiverWatch recently reported that one Stella Akagbuam was arrested for parading herself as a medical doctor in Obudu with the state government denying the presence of any medical outreach program in Obudu.
Last year, another team had used residences of indigenes to render medical services in very inhabitable circumstances along Ranch Road before they were also arrested.
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