Alleged armed robbers’ invasion of the maternity ward of the Central Hospital, in Benin, Edo State, on Tuesday sparked a protest by patients receiving treatment at the hospital.
It was gathered that the aggrieved patients who were mostly women, overpowered the only security guard at the gate who tried to stop them and put the gates leading to the Hospital under locks and keys.
The situation prevented both out-patients and staff from accessing the hospital for over an hour.
One of the protesting patients, Loveth Oghenekaro, who attributed the development to the poor security situation in the hospital, said the protest was to register their grievances over what she described as incessant robbery incidents in the Hospital.
“Last Sunday, at about 1 am, armed robbers through the ceiling, entered the maternity ward and dispossessed a patient’s relation of N100,000 and three phones.
“This is not the first time a robbery attack is taking place in the Hospital. Last week, patients at the accident and emergency ward were also robbed and the management is not doing anything about it,” she said.
Oghenekaro disclosed that after the attack, they briefed the hospital management of the development but nothing was done about it, saying that the management only came to the ward to assess the situation without addressing the patients who were traumatised by the attack.
“The stolen money was meant to settle the bill of the patient who delivered at the hospital. I was the one who borrowed her N5000 to buy drugs,” she said.
The Chief Medical Director of the Hospital, Dr. Philip Ugbodaga, who addressed the protesters, assured them that adequate security would be provided.
“When the incident happened, I reported the matter to the police and our security guards were able to get one of the robbers and was handed over to the police. We have requested for police presence at night,” Ugbodaga said.
He said they believed that the robbery was done in collaboration with an insider because when the suspects entered the ward, they didn’t even ask for the money, but went straight to where the money was kept to pick it.
Also reacting to the development, the Director, Hospital Services and Chief Executive of Hospital Management Board, Chris Obaseki, described the development as unfortunate.
Obaseki who noted that a hospital is a place that patients seek treatment, assured that they are doing their best to provide security in the hospital