By Perez Brisibe
THERE was pandemonium on Wednesday night at the Ughelli Central Hospital after some policemen from the Ughelli Area Command pounced on a male nurse of the hospital for allegedly failing to assist them in carrying a male victim rushed by the policemen to the Accident and Emergency Unit of the hospital for treatment.
The irate policemen number six, were also said to have threatened to shoot the nurse identified as Blessing Oshiegbu and an unidentified health assistant on duty if they failed to embark on prompt medical attention on the patient who was later discovered to be a policeman.
A female nurse, who witnessed the incident, told Saturday Vanguard that Blessing was slapped multiple times by the policemen resulting to him slumping after which he was forced at gun point to carry the patient on a wheelchair to the unit for treatment.
Trouble was said to have started when Blessing who claimed to have addressed the officers calmly, had appealed to the policemen to assist him evacuate the patient into the unit for treatment as he could not carry the patient alone from the police vehicle.
Infuriated by his appeal, the policemen were alleged to have pounced on him asking if “that wasn’t his duty.”
A top management officer of the hospital who confirmed the beating of the nurse to our correspondent, said some patients were on admission took to hiding following threat by the police officers to shoot indiscriminately at anyone who dare intrude in the case.
Confirming the incident when contacted, Mr. Blessing who directed all enquiries to the hospital management, lamented that the incident had led to severe pains in his two ears with his mobile set damaged, adding that he is having difficulty in hearing with his ears as a result of the incident.
It was gathered that the Ughelli Zonal Medical Director, ZMD, Dr. Moses Eyevweruvwu, who led other senior doctors and top management of the hospital to a meeting with Ughelli Area Commander, Adepoju Ilori on Friday were alleged to have been insulted and subsequently staged a walk out from the meeting.
One of the doctors explained, “Do you know that the patient in question happened to be a police officer? They that brought him did not know he was their colleague. It was at the hospital that they discovered that he was policeman when they saw his identity card because they seized his document including his money. They were the people that injured the man and the same time brought him to hospital.
“Today (Friday), they said the police want to see us. When we got to the police station, it wasn’t what we went for that the DPO was addressing initially. We finally got to talked about what happened. One of the police officers there saw the witnesses that night and won’t want to go with those witnesses so that they could be threatened.
Although, Dr Eyevweruvwu (ZMD) could not be reached for comment, the Head of Accident and Emergency Unit, Dr Odiri Diodemise, confirmed the development to our correspondent on phone on Friday when contacted.
He narrated that, “When they (policemen) came in they were asking of doctors but the nurse who they met asked them to help him bring the patient to A & E Unit. That moment, they held and dragged him to he should go bring the patient. In the process they started slapping and hitting him with the butt of the guns. For the beating not to get worst he obeyed them and he went there to single handedly brought the injured patient.”