The Cross River State Police Command has arrested a fake medical doctor, who worked with the name, Dr. Collins Okafor, at the General Hospital in Calabar, the state capital.
The suspect, whose real name is Mr. Simeon Kejohu (34), was said to have used the certificate of a medical practitioner to secure employment with the Cross River State Ministry of Health and worked in the hospital for one and half years before his true identity was discovered.
A source at the hospital, who is a senior health personnel, said the suspectâ€™s identity became suspicious when all the medical doctors in the hospital were compulsorily made to register online as directed by the Medical Advisory Council.
She said, â€œMedical doctors were recently requested to register online and as one of the doctors in the hospital, Dr. Collins Okafor, had no choice but to register. When he did, they found out that the certificate he presented was conflicting with that of another medical doctor from Abia State.
â€œOn further interrogation, it was discovered that he (the suspect) is a health technologist, who impersonated a medical doctor. That was how the police were invited to take over the case.â€
Corroborating the position of the source, the Officer-in-Charge of the Cross River State Intelligence Bureau, Mr. Habu Sani, said, â€œWe got the information that there was a fake medical doctor in the hospital and commenced investigation immediately. When we went to his office, there were no incriminating documents but by the time we searched his house, we discovered some documents which clearly explained how he was able to carry out the assignment through forgery.
â€œWe found in his house the document of one Dr. Collins Okafor, we now made contacts with the Medical Advisory Council in Abuja and they told us that two people had registered bearing the same name and therefore advised us to hold the person we had picked.â€
Sani, a Chief Superintendent of Police, said prior to working at the General Hospital in Calabar, Kejohu confessed that he had worked in a private hospital in Abuja where he established a contact with a doctor who assisted him in securing employment with the Cross River State Ministry of Health as an indigene of the state.
He added that a team from the Medical Advisory Council in Abuja had come to Calabar to give useful statement, adding that enough proof had been established against the suspect.
The suspect is from Obudu in Obanliku Local Government Area of the state.
Sani further explained, â€œThe other aspect we are still trying to verify is whether the real Dr. Collins Okafor is still alive or dead. We are also going to investigate how government was able to employ someone without the knowledge of how to manage peopleâ€™s lives.
â€œHe worked as a medical doctor from October 1, 2010 to January 2012. We have called the team leader of the Residency Committee that interviewed him; we are still compiling their records to see who recommended him for employment.
â€œThis issue is serious because it is something that affects human lives. We will go through the investigation and point out where all the lapses are to the government because we do not know how many of such people will be in government employ.â€
Speaking with Metro, Kejohu, who was looking sober, said his friend (Dr. Collins Okafor) gave him the certificate in the presence of his parents (Collinsâ€™) before he died four years ago.
He said, â€œBefore Dr. Collins Okafor died, he called me by his sick bed as his best friend and said he would give me his certificate, which he did in the presence of his family. I studied at the School of Health Technology in Benue State. I have worked for over one year at the General Hospital in Calabar but never handled any surgery.â€
The source said before Kejohu was nabbed, some medical personnel in the hospital had doubted his credibility because of his inability to carry out some critical functions expected of a doctor.
The source added that the fake doctor had on a number of times given wrong prescriptions to patients, adding that his prescriptions had been faulted by other medical doctors and nurses at different times.
â€œThe worst is that he had always evaded anything that has to do with surgery over the time. Recently, a woman with ectopic pregnancy lost her life because the suspect was not competent to handle her situation and he also did not inform his other colleagues until the woman died,â€ she said.