Nigerian police chief tells doctors to avoid ‘flamboyant lifestyles’ because of kidnappers

by Staff writer

The Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris Kpotum, has advised health workers in Nigeria to avoid flamboyant lifestyles.

He said they should rather live simple lives in order to avoid attracting undue attention from terrorists and others who kidnap people for ransom.

“Avoid showing that you are rich, try and portray yourself as a civil servant with meagre salary or running a small business.

“As healthcare professionals you are also mandated by law to report any one who comes or was brought to your facility for treatment of gunshot wounds. Such persons can be treated but the security agencies should be informed for questioning,” he said.

Idris gave the advice while delivering the keynote address at the opening ceremony of a National Conference on Security of Health Workers and Medical Practitioners organised by the Nigerian Medical Association in Abuja this month.

According to the Police boss, kidnapping gangs and terror groups target health workers, typically sold out by close family members, aggrieved friends or staff, who consider them as persons of high cash value.

He also urged the medical professionals to be mindful of shabbily dressed persons on the highway with Military or Police uniforms manning checkpoint, that have no solid checkpoint features or Police/Army vehicles parked by the side.

The IGP, who regretted that over 13 health workers were kidnapped in recent times, called for increased vigilance in order to identify suspicious individuals and report them to security agencies.

IGP Idris was represented at the event by the Force’s Medical Officer, Assistant Inspector-General, Kaumi Ahmadu.

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