Nigeria: Police arrest hospital proprietor for illegal surgery

A medical practitioner and owner of Empire Medical Centre, Mr. Onumoh Eleazar, have been arrested by the Lagos State Police Command for allegedly operating on some residents of Lagos State without a certificate or license. It was gathered that Eleazar, whose facility is on Soyebo Street, Ikorodu, had been practicing for sometime before officials of the Lagos Health Facility Monitoring and Accreditation Agency stormed the area. The officials were said to have found four patients awaiting surgeries at the hospital. Three others were said to have been operated on by the suspect. All the patients were subsequently taken to the Ikorodu General Hospital, while the centre was shut. The Director of Public Affairs, Ministry of Health, Adeola Salako, who confirmed the incident, has said that the suspect claimed to have studied medicine in the Dominican Republic, adding that when asked to produce his certificate, he claimed he had yet to get it due to financial constraints.She has said that Mr. Onumoh Eleazer has claimed that he studied Medicine in the Dominican Republic, but that he didn’t have the money to collect his certificate. He, however, confessed that one Dr. Godwin Kanu, a retired consultant traumatologist and orthopedist, trained him for 14 years after his return to the country and since then, he had been practicing medicine.” The Special Adviser to the Governor on Primary Health Care, Dr. Olufemi Onanuga, has said that Eleazar was arrested for offences bordering on quackery, adding that he had been handed over to the police for prosecution. He has explained that the ministry of health had received reports of quackery about the facility from residents, saying investigations indicated that the “suspect performed surgical procedures on innocent and unsuspecting patients without a certificate and license, noting that all the patients found on the centre’s premises had been transferred to the Ikorodu General Hospital for proper management. The state Commissioner for Health, Jide Idris, has said that the closure of the facility was coming on the heels of a monitoring exercise carried out by HEFAMAA to regulate and sanitize the operations of health facilities in the state. He said that Mr. Onumoh Eleazer will be punished according to the laws of the land.

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