Africa Investigates, an awarding-winning series by Al Jazeera which gives Africa’s best journalists opportunity to pursue high-level investigative targets across the continent, has this week exposed fake doctors operating in Delta State, Nigeria.
The discoveries from the investigation carried out Anas Arameyaw Anas and Rosemary Nwaebuni who went undercover with secret cameras, also led to the arrest of three persons.
While Nigerian law forbids abortions, except in cases where the patient’s life is in danger, the report of the investigation titled; ‘Nigeria’s Fake Doctors’ showed one of the journalists, Rosemary, who pretended to be pregnant, twice being offered abortion services from unlicensed practitioners.
In the video, Precious Johnson Chukwudi, who operates a pharmacy in Delta State, offered to provide an abortion – and agreed the price – despite Rosemary’s negative pregnancy test, while Mr and Mrs Ogboru offered Rosemary an abortion in the dirty backroom of a bar, without conducting a pregnancy test.
The Nigerian Medical and Dental Association (NMDA) and Ministry of Health (MoH) have confirmed that neither Chukwudi nor the Ogboru’s are licensed and registered as medical doctors and that their shops are not registered clinics.
Based on the evidence provided by Rosemary and Anas’ video, the police have Mr and Mrs Ogboru. Charles Igudala, who operates a clinic at Dictat Royal Home in Warri, Delta State, was also arrested after he was covertly filmed offering medical services and injections to Anas in extremely unsanitary conditions.
The NMDA and MoH also confirmed that Igudala is not a licensed and registered doctor, while Dr Alfred Ebiakofa of the Nigerian Ministry of Health said that Igudala had been a target of the Nigerian health authorities for some time, but that they “had not been able to catch him.”
Rosemary and Anas also filmed other fake doctors wrongly diagnosing healthy patients with malaria and typhoid, as well as using a Quantum Resonance Analyser, a highly controversial machine of unproven effectiveness that is used to illegally diagnose – merely on the basis of tones and lights – a variety of serious illnesses to perfectly healthy patients.
‘Spell of The Albino’, the last investigation Anas filmed for Africa Investigates, won a One World Media Award and was nominated for a Royal Television Society Award.