The Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria has dragged 20 persons to court for claiming and operating as medical doctors without requisite training and qualification.
The council also suspended its accreditation to the College of Health Sciences, Igbinedion University, Okada, for failing to meet the required standards.
The MDCN Registrar/Chief Executive, Dr. Abdulmumini Ibrahim, stated this on Tuesday in Abuja during the induction of 395 medical doctors and dentists.
He said, “We have a new unit called the Monitoring and Inspectorate Department in the secretariat, which is responsible for cracking down on individuals involved in quackery. Currently, we have about 20 cases pending in courts and all have to do with quackery where people parade themselves as doctors.
“They were arrested and prosecuted, that is why they are in court. Whether they are on bail or not on bail is another issue. We have succeeded in arresting them. They were arrested by the state monitoring committees, then the council secretariat was invited as a witness to testify in court.”
Ibrahim particularly pointed to a case in Lagos where a rusticated medical student was parading himself as a doctor.
The suspect, he said, could not complete his training overseas and he returned to Nigeria claiming to be a medical doctor.
On restoring standards in the profession, Ibrahim said the council was committed to living above aboard.
He said, “Failure of some medical/dental institutions to meet the quality assurance requirements of council resulted in withdrawal or suspension of accreditation. In this regard, the case of the College of Health Sciences at Igbinedion University, Okada in Edo State readily comes to mind.
“The accreditation of this institution was suspended for gross violation of the council regulations on operation of medical/dental institutions, especially in approved students’ quota. This institution was barred from admitting medical students since August 2010. This sanction will remain enforced until all pending cases are resolved.”
Ibrahim, however, noted that Igbinedion University was not the only culprit.
He said, “There are standards and guidelines put in place by the council. But if any of these institutions are found violating any of these guidelines, we will revisit that medical school. If they do not really address the issues, we will slam suspension before we withdraw accreditation. Currently, Igbinedion University is in that category; and the council has given its management a two-year timeline for correction.
“If its management corrects the anomalies within the period, then the council will reinstate the accreditation. Currently, Igbinedion University should not be admitting students and should not be graduating students. There are students that in their final years, after writing their final exams, they must be subjected to these professional examinations.”
“In 2011, we suspended about 11 medical schools and they were given time limits to address those issues that have been violated. Nine of them were able to address the issues within the time, except Igbinedion University and University of Benin. However, UNIBEN was able to address those issues after a period. For now, it is only Igbinedion University that is becoming recalcitrant and it is lingering too much.”