Alleged Organ Harvesting: MD Of Alliance Hospital, Three Others Docked


The Medical Director of Alliance Hospital, Dr Christopher Otabor and three others were on Monday, March 18, 2024 appeared before a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory over alleged organ harvesting.

The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) which is prosecuting Dr Otabor also charged Emmanuel Olorunlaye, Chikaodili Ugochukwu and Dr Aremu Abayomi on 11 count bordering on organ harvesting.

The Prosecution Counsel, Hassan Tahir told the Court presided by Justice Kezziah Ogbonnaya that Olorunlaye procured one boy aged 17 and another man aged 25, Aminu Yahuza for the removal of their kidneys at the said hospital located in Area 11, Garki, Abuja sometime in February 2023.

Tahir further said that Ugochukwu, who is an Administrative Secretary at the hospital, assisted in the removal of the kidneys of the victims at the said hospital, adding that Dr. Otabor accommodated the victims at Alliance Hospital for the removal of their kidneys.

The prosecution Counsel also said that Dr. Abayomi, a surgeon with the hospital, performed the surgery, stressing that the offence contravened the provisions of sections 20(2)(a)(3) of the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Enforcement and Administration Act, 2015 and punishable under same section(2)(b).

However, the defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges as Counsel to Olorunlaye, Mr Richard Adeboju, moved a motion for bail pursuant to Section 162 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), seeking for bail pending on the hearing.

Adeboju’s motion which was filed on March 13, was supported with 11 paragraphs affidavit with a written address and urged the court to adopt same as his oral submission to grant the application.

Similarly, Afam Osigwe, SAN, the defence counsel to the other defendants filed a bail application dated March 13 with a 35 paragraphs affidavit, seeking an order of the court admitting the defendants to bail.

Osigwe said; “Otabor is on bail earlier granted by Justice Hamza Muazu and I urged the court to grant same. The defendants are responsible persons who run businesses and families and have been diligently honouring NAPTIP’s invitation”.

He prayed the court to adopt the same administrative bail conditions that was granted to the defendants by NAPTIP.

The prosecution Counsel did not oppose the bail application but applied for accelerated hearing of the matter, adding that by Section 165 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), the court may impose its own conditions and does not have to be same conditions for bail granted by NAPTIP.

Ruling on the bail, Justice Kezziah Ogbonnaya held that judicially, administrative bail fizzles out upon arraignment and cannot determine the court’s bail but, however ordered the defendants to sign a register on a daily basis at the NAPTIP headquarters with effect from March 19, 2024 except on days the Court will be hearing the case.

Justice Ogbonnaya further ordered the defendants to deposit their travel documents with the Court’s registrar and warned them to adhere to the order or risk their bail being revoked.

The trial judge there after adjourned the matter for accelerated hearing from May 6 to May 9 after which the hearing of the case will continue on May 13.

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