THE Namibian Police in the Omusati Region have arrested a 29-year-old registered nurse after who was caught red-handed smuggling stolen medicine to Angola on Wednesday.
Police spokesperson in Omusati, Inspector Lineekela Shikongo, said that the suspect was found in possession of pharmaceutical products and failed to give a satisfactory explanation or proof of ownership. It is believed that the suspect stole the medical supplies from the clinic where she is employed by the Ministry of Health and Social Services.
The incident occurred around 14:00 at the Oikokola border control point in the Etayi constituency.
The suspect was intending to cross into Angola with the pharmaceutical products without any authorization or permit,” said Shikongo, stating further that a police search of the suspect’s bag discovered 36 sachets of unspecified tablets, 39 empty plastic bags for tablets, nine 50ml bottles of liquid paracetamol, three 100ml bottles of multivitamin, three 100ml bottles of co-trimaxazol, a 100ml container of calamine, a container of loperamide, four bottles of kloraxin, two bottles of eye drops, six bandage, nine gloves, four containers of ointment, 28 condoms, one Diazepam, two injection needles. two syringes, two gauze swabs, four surgical blades, one infusion set, two bags of dextrose, one dressing pack, one role of Elastoplast and four containers of wound ointment.
“The total value of the stolen items is yet to be determined,” said Shikongo.
The suspect is expected to appear in the Outapi Magistrate’s on Friday.
Omusati health director Alfons Amoomo confirmed the arrest of the nurse, describing the incident as the first of its kind ever since he was appointed regional health director four years ago.
Amoomo said that the nurse, who is now implicated in the smuggling of medicine, was stationed at the Odimbwa Clinic since 2015.
Amoomo explained that a person can only take medicine to Angola if such medicine is registered in Angola.
“We do not take medicine from Namibia to Angola. Medicines are registered products and are regulated. No person should buy medicine from health workers. People should report to the nearest police anyone found selling medicine on the streets,” he said.
He noted further that: “In actual fact all health professionals have their scopes of practice. No health professional is allowed to issue medication without prescription. Only those going for outreach are allowed to carry and issue medication at outreach points. In the villages there are also identified community health workers who are also allowed to carry and issue medicine. Otherwise nobody should carry medicine,” he said.