Dr. Orockarrah Orock, a resident doctor attached to the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH) in Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu State, has managed to escape from the clutches of his kidnappers. The incident took place on the night of November 4, 2023, within the hospital premises while Dr. Orock was on call duty.
Confirming the development, Dr. Celestine Ugwoke, the Chairman of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) Enugu State Chapter, revealed that the doctor’s miraculous escape was made possible when the kidnappers grew content with the ransom offered by Dr. Orock’s wife. They proceeded to indulge in drugs and fell into a deep slumber, allowing the doctor to gradually crawl away from his captors’ den. Eventually, he made his way to safety near the Four Corner Junction of the Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway.
Dr. Ugwoke expressed gratitude to God for Dr. Orock’s miraculous escape, emphasizing the growing danger faced by doctors in the state. He highlighted the fact that medical professionals, particularly those in tertiary health institutions, have become prime targets for kidnappers.
To address this issue, Dr. Ugwoke warned that any further abductions of doctors from UNTH would result in a complete strike by doctors in the teaching hospital. He stated that this warning would extend to other tertiary hospitals in the state as well. The NMA plans to meet with the Chief Medical Director of UNTH to establish and enforce a comprehensive security protocol to ensure the safety of doctors, management staff, and patients within the hospital.
Furthermore, the association seeks increased security measures within the hospital premises, including adequate perimeter fencing and the installation of a Closed Circuit Television Camera (CCTV) system with a dedicated monitoring base. Dr. Ugwoke highlighted the association’s previous efforts to address the security concerns faced by doctors through correspondence with the Commissioner for Health and the Commissioner of Police, as well as attempts to schedule a meeting with Governor Peter Mbah. Unfortunately, these attempts have been unsuccessful, leading to growing frustration among doctors.
Dr. Ugwoke emphasized the urgency of addressing doctors’ security concerns before the situation escalates further, calling on the government to take swift action to ensure the safety of medical professionals in Enugu State.