A Fake Cancer Doctor Napped And Sentence For One Year Imprisonment
A fake doctor identified as Sunday Oppa was sentenced to one year imprisonment and fined N10,000.00 by the Kaduna State High Court for parading himself as a medical doctor.
The accused person, Mr. Sunday Oppa a Medical Laboratory Technician, impersonated as a Medical Doctor and consultant working with the World Health Organization (WHO) with expertise in Cancer treatment.
Mr. Oppa was accused of impersonating as a medical doctor on or before February 4, 2015.
It was reported to swansylinks that the fake medical doctor is a father of 9 children. The accused was arrested and arraigned for the first time in October 21, 2015, because he wrongly diagnosed and administered cancer treatment to Mr. George Ayuba of Sarkin Pawa Road, Narayi Bayan Dutse Kaduna.
Mr. Ayuba, having realised that his health situation was aggravating, approached Al-Mansur Hospital for consultation and treatment. He was diagnosed with tuberculosis (T.B) by Dr Kola as against the earlier report of cancer by Mr. Oppa.
Doctor Kola confronted Mr Oppa, his supposedly medical doctor colleague with his own medical report. Mr. Oppa confessed to not being a medical doctor and promised to refund the money paid for treatment. He equally promised not to indulge in the act of impersonation again.
Mr. Ayuba, having been genuinely treated of tuberculosis (T.B) at the Al-Mansur Hospital, is hale and hearty and now goes about doing his normal business.
The case is handled by a senior counsel Swan Stephen Esq. in the office of the Attorney General of the State. A two-count charge was preferred against the accused at the Kaduna State High Court. The first charge was in relation to the act of impersonating as a Medical Practitioner and accepting payments for same.
A Non-Governmental Organization, NGO, known as Molluma Yakubu Loma Medico-Legal Center applied to the Kaduna State Ministry of Justice to take over the case for diligent prosecution in order to protect members of the public.
Justice Kurada said the accused has committed an offense punishable under Section 5(6) of the Medical and Dental Practitioner Act, Cap. M8, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.
Justice Kurada also said the second charge bothers on administering cancer drugs with the full knowledge that the patient was not suffering from cancer and with the knowledge that the said act could have caused his death and therefore, committed an offence of culpable homicide punishable under Section 229(1) of the Penal Code, Laws of Kaduna State.
Justice Kurada in passing judgement held that the accused is guilty of the first count charge based on the overwhelming evidence by witnesses and his confession during cross examination by the prosecution counsel.
The defendant was however not found guilty on the second charge. According to Justice Kurada, the prosecution counsel had not given evidence that the defendant attempted to kill the first respondant by the act of administering wrong treatment.
Justice Kurada said thus: “Yes, there is evidence that the defendant administered cancer drugs to the first respondant who was not suffering from cancer, an act that could have killed him. But there is no evidence before this honorable court that it was in an attempt to kill him. I therefore find him not guilty on the second charge”.
Justice Kurada further said “The accused is convicted and sentence to one year imprisonment and to pay the fine of ten thousand naira (N10,000.00), failure to pay the fine shall attract additional six (6) months in prison.
Justice Kurada stated in his judgment that the defendant did not show any slightest remorse for his act, but insisted that his conduct was justifiable. The court in convicting the accused stated further, that the accused is a menace to the public, it is necessary that he is given adequate punishment to deter others.
Counsel to the accused, Tajudeen Oladoya thanked Justice Kurada for fair hearing. However, he appealed for a lighter punishment because his client has never been convicted before. In addition, he said the defendant was a father of 9 and has younger ones to cater for.
The prosecution counsel, Stephen asked the court to disregard the appeal of the counsel to the accused. He said lighter punishment is only applicable on summary trial hence, the accused refused to accept that he was wrong. He added that the accused should be given the stiffest punishment to serve as a deterrent to others.
This is the first case that Molluma Yakubu Loma Medico-Legal Center has seen to its logical conclusion. The center hopes to also secure conviction on the case of Eunice Kusheiyan Iliya who is a young lawyer and a victim too. She eventually died and her family is unwilling to seek for redress in the court due to the trauma the incident had inflicted on them.
Gloria Mabeiam Ballason Esq, Executive director of the center said thus: ” I am calling on members of the public to be more vigilant at ensuring that people who had no business holding a stethoscope do not treat patients and that the idea of leaving medical negligence and quackery to God’s will has claimed many lives, except those culpable are brought to justice”.
The Molluma Yakubu Loma Medico-Legal Center is the only center of its kind in Africa and the third in the world. It was commissioned in 2014 by Prof Chidi Anselm Odinkalu, the then Chairman National Human Rights Commission.