Kubwa General Hospital, Abuja, on Wednesday, told a Lagos State Special Offences Court sitting in Lagos that a medical report presented in court by a former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, was not issued by it.
The management of the hospital gave the evidence through the hospital’s head of medical records, Bassey Amah, while testifying as a witness in the ongoing trial of the former minister over allegations of forgery.
Amah, who is the first prosecution witness in the case, said that Fani-Kayode is not a patient of the hospital and has no medical record in the hospital.
Recall that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had arraigned Fani-Kayode before Justice Olubunmi Abike-Fadipe on a 12-count charge of procurement of a “fabricated” medical report and use of the false document.
The anti-graft agency had specifically accused Fani-Kayode of procuring one Dr Ogieva Oziegbe to issue the fake medical report, which he allegedly tendered before a Federal High Court in Lagos where he is currently standing trial before Justice Daniel Osiagor for alleged money laundering.
The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
At the resumed hearing of the matter on Wednesday, Amah claimed that the doctor that purportedly signed the medical report is not a medical doctor at Kubwa General Hospital.
While being led in evidence by the EFCC counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, the witness said, “Mr Femi Fani-Kayode does not have a record with Kubwa General Hospital”.
He further testified that the hospital on October 3, 2021, received a letter from the EFCC to investigate the authenticity of a medical report on Fani-Kayode.
Amah said that the investigation by the hospital revealed that the defendant does not have a record with the facility.
He also maintained that the medical report purportedly emanating from the hospital is an act of forgery, adding that “The document is not authentic.”
When Oyedepo attempted to tender the letter of request written to the hospital by EFCC, dated October 3, 2021 and the response to the letter from Kubwa General Hospital dated October 13, 2021, the defence lawyer, Norrison Quakers (SAN) objected to the admissibility of the documents.
Quakers based his objection on the premise that the witness in the box was not the maker of the document.
The senior lawyer submitted that “The witness introduced himself as Bassey Amah, he is not the maker, he can’t even give evidence on the document.”
But Oyedepo urged the court to dismiss the objection, “the document tendered is a public document. It emanated from Kubwa General Hospital and the witness in the box has given evidence on oath.
“He has given evidence on how they received the document, how it was investigated and how the letter was prepared.”
The EFCC lawyer argued that by the role the witness played in the making of the document, “he is the maker, he can also be described as the maker of the document. It is relevant to the fact of the issue.”
Justice Abike-Fadipe ruled in favour of the EFCC, holding that,’’ The letter was issued by the Medical Director. The hospital itself cannot come to give evidence and can only do so via one of the human personnel.”
She ruled, “I am satisfied that the witness in the box is competent to testify.
Oyedepo, leading the witness on, asked, “Do you know Abdulrazak Jimoh?
He replied “He is a staff of Kubwa General Hospital.
Has your facility issued any other medical report about this defendant?
He answered “No”
The prosecutor, probing the head of the medical record department further on what the position of the hospital is, on exhibits earlier admitted and marked by the judge, the witness continued, “as I said earlier, Mr Fani-Kayode is not our patient and has no medical report in our hospital.
“The name is not even found there.”
The witness also said,’’ the doctor that signed the medical report is not our doctor.
“The number is not our hospital unit number.’’
He added that he does not know a certain Tochukwu Eze in the hospital where he works as a Chief of Medical Record.
“I don’t know him.”
Do you know Dr Ogieva Oziegbe?
“Yes, he was in Kubwa General Hospital.”
The judge has adjourned the matter to February 25, 2022 for the continuation of the trial.