Association of General and Private Medical Practitioners of Nigeria, AGPMPN, Imo State branch, yesterday condemned the state government for targeting medical doctors with acts of demolition of their homes, hospitals and threats to life. It said since the association disclosed to the public the intention of Governor Rochas Okorocha to use concessioned hospitals in the state for human organ-trafficking, members have been under constant threat. In a statement signed by the association’s chairman, Dr. Philip Njemanze, and made available to National Mirror, the association said the state government had coerced some medical doctors with threats to life and property to dissociate themselves from the position of the general house.
It accused Okorocha of demolishing several homes and hospitals of some of its members, particularly hospital premises of the association’s chairman, Njemanze, at No. 1, MCC Road, Owerri. It stated in part, “These acts of intimidation by Imo State government (are) targeted at doctors to get them to dissociate themselves from the collective unanimous resolution of the general house of AGPMPN in Imo State on November 15, 2015, to petition against the actions of Governor Okorocha that threaten the lives of Nigerians.’’ The Imo chapter of AGPMPN in a 214-paged petition dated December 20, 2015 showed the linkages of Okorocha’s closure of hospitals to actions that facilitate human organ trafficking.
“The position of the medical doctors was reaffirmed in a public press interview held by the Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, under the theme: Imo Government threat to Sanctity of Life, on February 4, 2016. This was after the bloody shooting of a medical doctor at a peaceful rally by the police close to the Government House.” According to the association, the official position of AGPMPN Imo State will not change despite the threats to life and coercion of her members. “It is regrettable that these dastardly lawless acts of Imo State government can only be interpreted as motivated by guilt.
It is a known fact that intimidation of potential witnesses is a crime under the Criminal Code of Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.” While calling on the Federal Government to intervene to restore the rule of law in Imo State, the association warned that confession and declarations obtained by coercion are not admissible in any law court. It advised members of the public to disregard any declarations attributed to medical doctors departing from the official position of the association, adding that the fears being expressed by some doctors and their family members, particularly as the Imo State government “uses its terror machinery to lash out at them, is understandable.” (National Mirror)