…accuse him of impersonation

It was a clear case of the hunter becoming the hunted yesterday, as the Nigeria Police Force paraded a whistleblower, 44-year old Martins Ugwu Okpe, accusing him of impersonation and breach of official trust.Acting-Inspector-General-of-Police-IGP-Solomon-Arase

Mr Okpe had for over nine years allegedly impersonated his childhood friend, George Davidson Daniel who is a medical doctor.

The police however clarified that the suspect had never undertaken any clinical endeavour. Okpe said his highest qualification is a Senior School Certificate which he obtained in 1993.

The suspect who was a GL 13 officer at the Federal Ministry of Health in Abuja was also the chairman of the ministry’s branch of the Nigeria Medical Association, NMA.

Writing under the name, George Davidson, the suspect had earlier written a petition in which he alleged the management of N1.9 billion Ebola funds. The petition, addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari was copied to all anti-corruption agencies, US Embassy, international health organizations, and a number of government institutions in the country. He had accused senior officials of the ministry, including its Permanent Secretary, Linus Awute and the National Centre for Disease Control of the malfeasance.

Parading the suspect yesterday in Abuja, both the Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of Analytical Tracking and Interception Centre at the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department FCIID, ACP Garba Baba Umar and the Deputy Force Public Relations Officer, CSP Abayomi Shogunle said the real Dr Daniel is on a residency training at the Bingham University Teaching Hospital Jos.

According to Mr Shogunle, the medical doctor had no fore-knowledge of the activities of Mr Okpe who served as his Groom’s Man at his wedding over a decade ago.

He said the suspect cloned the certificates of Dr Daniel during the wedding and used same to secure employment in the ministry.

As chairman of the NMA, Okpe said he did not undergo any form of biometric verification of his credentials as the processes were always waved for him by the officials.

According to the police, an anonymous petition was sent to the Civil Service Commission in May 2015 and it was discovered that Mr Okpe “has been parading himself as a Medical Doctor in the Federal Ministry of Health in Abuja for almost one decade”.

The police said he was among medical volunteers trained by the ministry in conjunction with the African Union Support to Ebola Outbreak in West Africa Mission in Liberia, but that he declined to go having collected all the necessary monetary benefits from both the ministry and the AU.

The suspect would soon be arraigned before a court for the offences of theft, impersonation and dishonestly receiving what he is not due for. Other charges would be “wearing and carrying token used by medical doctors, framing of incorrect document with intent to cause injury, breach of official trust, criminal intimidation and intentional assault with intent to provoke breach of the peace, all in contravention of Sections 288, 132, 133, 122, 124, 99, 398 and 399 respectively of the Penal Code.”

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