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General News of Friday, 23 February 2018

Source: Kasapa FM

Tamale Teaching Hospital CEO accused of buying stolen items

The ongoing investigation into the strange disappearance of equipment valued at Ghc70, 000 donated to the Tamale Teaching Hospital by a South Korean aid agency, continue to unravel how the equipment vanished.

The investigation has now crawled it way up to more top official’s alleged involvement including the Chief Executive Officer of the Hospital Daniel Akolbila, who is said to have also unknowingly bought some of the stolen items for his private hospital.

New information now available to Kasapa News suggest that the prime suspect in the ongoing probe, Kumbeiri Thomas, told multiple people including Dr. Mohamed Ibrahim, the pathologist at the TTH and one of the owners of Universal Herbal Centre where some of the stolen items were retrieved by police, that he sold some of the beds to Dr. Akolbila for his Tizaa private clinic also in Tamale.

Dr. Mohammed Ibrahim, the top official said to be indicted in the investigation made the revelation in an interview with Kasapa News on Wednesday.

The pathologist was explaining his side of the story of the incident and how the stolen beds ended up in his private clinic.

He said his private hospital didn’t know the beds were stolen and never at any point did the suspected tell them until the police came to seize them, because the suspect told him the equipment were sent to him from Techiman in the Brong Ahafo region.

Dr. Ibrahim indicated that on the day, the suspect Kumbeiri Thomas approached his facility to sell the beds which were without “labels”, he had raised doubts about the quality of the equipment but the suspect convinced him that many private hospitals including the CEO’s had bought same beds from him without any complaint.

“He said to me that ‘these are very good beds, a lot of hospitals in town have bought it. I sold them to so many hospitals and none of them has complained about these beds not being strong’. And he gave two examples. He mentioned ‘I sold it to Dr. Kolbilah clinic, he is using it, there is no problem. I sold it to KABSAD, they are using it, there is no problem.”

Kumbeiri Thomas, a cleaner at the Tamale Teaching Hospital, two months ago led a team of other staff to steal expensive equipment meant for an Infectious Disease Treatment Centre for the sub-region donated by the Korean government.

The items include; 12 beds, 2 knapsack sprayer, a Flood Flash, 3 semi-automatic autoclave, a refrigerator, washing machine, dryer, 6 medium and small sterilization drums, 3 overhead table, 5 suncare, trolleys and bed lockers.

After management of the hospital discovered the equipment were missing, it failed to report to security agencies but tried to probe internally until the BNI based on it intelligence moved in, a week later.

Even after some of the items were uncovered at private locations, the prime suspect had not been arrested until security officers stormed the Universal Herbal Centre to retrieve two of the stolen beds which it bought at a total of Gh1000.

Subsequently, few others were later allegedly arrested and detained including the pathologist and head of the Universal Herbal Centre, Dr. Ibrahim.

But speaking to Kasapa News, Dr. Ibrahim cleared that neither was he arrested nor under investigation and that the only time he visited the police station was when he handed over the prime suspect to the police after they searched his facility for the stolen beds.

“When the police came and picked the beds, we looked for Thomas and sent him to the police but unfortunately when we were there he consistently told us that these beds were coming from Techiman, when we went to the police, he said the beds were coming from Nalerigu, then the police noticed contradictions in his statements,” Dr Ibrahim disclosed.

Dr. Ibrahim stated further that when the police then questioned the suspect about his claim of selling some of the beds to the CEO, the suspect retracted saying he said that to attract and persuade buyers.

He denied all reports about his alleged involvement in the case and threatened legal action against those associating his name with theft.

The Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Daniel Kolbilah has not responded to requests for comment.

Meanwhile, a five-member committee formed by the CEO has concluded its investigation and recommendations have been presented to management.

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