The Head of Medical Records at the Kubwa General Hospital, Abuja, Mr Bassey Amah, on Wednesday told an Ikeja Special Offences Court that a former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, did not have medical records at the hospital.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Amah testified at the commencement of Fani-Kayode’s trial for alleged forgery of a medical certificate to evade trial at a Federal High Court in Lagos.
The former minister is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Led in evidence by Lead Prosecution Counsel, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo, Amah said he was the chief custodian of medical records at the hospital.
He said that his duty was to collect vital medical information of patients.
The witness said that the embattled former aviation minister did not have any medical record with the hospital.
“Mr Femi is not our patient and he does not have any medical record with us. The doctor that signed the report is not our doctor.
“In fact, we do not have any Dr Tochukwu Eze at our hospital,” he said.
The witness said that upon receiving a letter dated Oct. 3, 2021, from the EFCC to investigate the defendant, the hospital responded 10 days later.
“Kubwa General Hospital received a letter dated Oct. 3, 2021, from EFCC to investigate the defendant, that he did not have a medical record with the hospital.
“We sent a letter back with evidence on Oct. 13, 2021, to EFCC, that the defendant was never our patient.
“The evidence tendered emanated from Kubwa General Hospital,” Amah said.
Defence counsel, Mr Norrison Quakers (SAN), however, objected to tendering of the document, saying that the witness was not the maker of the documents.
“My lord, I cannot see the name of the witness on the documents in reference to Sections 102 and 104 of the Evidence Act.
“I, therefore, object to the evidence tendered, because the witness is not the maker,” he said.
Responding, Oyedepo said that the documents to be tendered are public documents.
“The documents are originals, and the witness is the maker of the documents.
“I refer your lordship to Section 102 (3) of the Evidence Act which says an officer or official on duty is authorised to submit documents,” he said.
Justice Olubunmi Abike-Fadipe admitted the documents in evidence, saying that there was no need to bring the authors of the documents to court for the documents to be admissible.
The judge noted that the witness testified that he was the Head of Medical Records of Kubwa General Hospital and that the letter was issued by the hospital’s medical director.
“In this case, I have certified that the witness in the box is competent to give evidence in court. I therefore admit the documents in evidence,” Abike-Fadipe said.
The judge adjourned the case until Feb. 25 for continuation of trial.
NAN reports that Fani-Kayode is facing a 12-count charge of procuring and execution of documents by false pretences, use of false documents, fabrication of evidence and use of fabricated evidence.
According to the EFCC, the defendant is also facing trial alongside Nenadi Usman, a former Minister of State for Finance before Justice Daniel Osiagor of a Federal High Court, Lagos on a 17-count charge of money laundering and diversion of N4.9 billion.
The trial of the duo has been stalled over alleged ill-health of Fani-Kayode.
The EFCC is alleging that medical reports presented by Fani-Kayode as proofs of his health status are fake.
The alleged offences violate Sections 88(1), 365(3), 366 and 369 of the Criminal Law of Lagos, 2015.