By ’Mantoetse Maama
THABA-TSEKA — Four people were arrested in Thaba-Tseka last Saturday for allegedly stealing medicines and illegally dispensing the medication to villagers.
The police said the four, who were masquerading as medical practitioners, were prescribing medicines and pills to patients after checking their blood pressure.
Acting Senior Superintendent, Khethisang Koro, said the suspects who include three men and a woman began stealing the medicines in February this year.
“The storeroom at the health centre was renovated in February, so during the renovations the suspects started stealing the medicines.
“We were informed that the suspects were volunteering to (examine) people who were drinking at public bars,” Koro said.
He added: “They were checking patients’ blood pressure with a sphygmomanometer (an instrument for measuring arterial blood pressure) and then prescribing some medication after observation.”
The police said the suspects were selling the pills for as little as 20 lisente each. They were also selling some ointment creams and calamine lotion to patients.
Koro said immediately after their arrest the suspects instructed their relatives at their homes to burn the medicines.
“One of the suspects was still in possession of his cell phone after being arrested so he alerted those who were at home to burn the medicine. When we got to his place there was nothing,” he said.
He said they had however been informed by villagers that the four were indeed selling medicines to the villagers.
One of the suspects was employed at the health centre as a counsellor.
The suspects are yet to appear in court as the police are still waiting for directives from the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP).
“All the suspects have not yet appeared in court as we are waiting for the DPP to give orders as one of them was an official at the health centre,” Koro said.