A Kenyan 28-year-old quack believed to have highly connected relatives on Monday confessed to have treated patients, performed surgery and delivered babies by Caesarian section even though he is not a doctor.
The strange thing is that not only did he put the lives of hundreds of Kenyans at risk for more than two years, the ministry of Health promoted him to Medical Superintendent!
Ronald Kiprotich Melly, 28, the Medical Superintendent of Meteitei Sub-County Hospital in Nandi, is believed to be the grandson of the late Ezekiel Barng’etuny, a successful businessman and powerful Moi-era politician from the same area.
Melly was arrested at the Kenya Medical and Practitioners Board offices, where he had been tricked to believe he was going to renew “permanent” medical licence.
Police officers on the case on Monday told the Nation Melly did not finish his studies at the University of Nairobi and wondered how he was deployed as a medical doctor by the Ministry of Health in April last year.
Documents show that he was posted to Kendu Adventist Hospital in Homa Bay County for 12 months after graduation, earning a monthly salary of Sh 35,910, a house allowance and other benefits.
This is despite the fact that for one to be posted as a doctor in Kenya, the graduating university must send the list of names of its medical students to the Ministry of Health, which then deploys them for one year internship in selected institutions.
On Monday, Melly confessed to the Kenya Medical Board CEO Daniel Yumbya that he still had three supplementary exams pending, meaning he was never qualified to graduate, let alone practise as a medical doctor.
-Forgotten Admission Number-
“The university cannot trace him on their records,” said Yumbya. “He is not among those who qualified or failed in his year. What is even surprising is that Melly says he has forgotten his university admission and registration number. I am waiting for official communication from the university tomorrow (Tuesday).”
Minutes after he was arrested by officers from the Special Crimes Prevention Unit, Melly confessed to the Nation that he had “conducted surgeries, Caesarean Sections and other medical procedures” as was required of him.
The investigation into his suspicious posting in the medical field began after the Nation contacted the board to confirm his status after a tip off by some doctors, who requested anonymity, and who had interacted with him but “felt he was not properly trained” and “neither had they seen him in their classes while at the university”.
When asked by Nation to name some of his lecturers or his classmates or even his registration number, Melly broke into a sweat, explaining that he could not remember some names or his registration number, and insisting instead they were in his car or back at home.