Ochiedike Dialysis and Diagnostic Centre, “the ultra modern, world class medical facility” located opposite commissioners’ quarters, along Concord Avenue, New Owerri, has become a ghost of itself, as staff, contractors and suppliers accuse the Dr. Iheanyi Nwachukwu led management of corruption, and diversion of funds meant for the payment of supplies made to the centre.
Two Accountants sent from the office of the state Accountant General to oversee financial transactions at the centre, on behalf of the government were frustrated out. The first was Mr. C.C Chukwu and later Deacon Ajaere.
According to reports, contractors and suppliers of diesel, films reagents, hand gloves, drugs dispensed in the pharmacy and other essentials used in the day to day running of the centre are fraudulently duped of their wares without payment.
According to our source, “suppliers are often sweet talked into delivering their goods and come back on scheduled dates to collect their money “because there is no cash now”. When eventually, the cash is made available, for payment to the suppliers, it is diverted and shared by the cabal that manages the place and the suppliers who should be paid, to enable them remain in business are dribbled endlessly.
Some of them who are owed hundreds of thousands for more than 2 years now, have been forced out of business, for lack of funds to continue. Some of them who bought the goods they supplied to Ochiedike on credit and those whose capital are loans from banks and other sources are now having sleepless nights, being chased around by creditors, as if their inability to pay back the loans is their fault.
Some staff of the centre who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, “Ochiedike has been colonized by Dr. Nwachukwu. The cash unit is managed by his immediate younger sister, Ngozi who is also in-charge of the store. She is neither an accountant nor a trained store keeper. The pharmacy is also managed by his cousin, Prisca, while his aide and confidant of several years, before and during his tenure as commissioner for public utilities, one miss Jecinta Uzoigwe is the General Manager and iron lady of Ochiedike. The funny thing is Jecinta just graduated from Alvan Ikoku Federal College of Education in 2015 and has not worked anywhere before coming to Ochiedike with Dr. Nwachukwu.
“With this clique in place, nobody, not even the government knows the exact income and expenditure of the centre, since the former Israeli General Manager, Mr. Kaspi Yoram was frustrated and schemed out by Dr. Nwachukwu”. Nobody knows how much is realized, how much is spent on diesel, drugs, reagents, films and salaries and other over head costs because more than 70% of the staff are now placed on commission. The only people on fixed salary are Dr. Nwachukwu’s mentioned accomplices and those from his place, Ezinihitte, Mbaise. They record and present whatever they wish to anybody who enquires.
It is also alleged that Dr. Iheanyi Nwachukwu often uses officers and men of New Owerri Police station to arrest, harass and intimidate most of the suppliers who come to ask for their money, hence most of them have stopped coming.
On a visit to the centre, one of the suppliers owed for films he supplied, a young unemployed graduate, said Ochiedike has truncated his dream and vision of going into supply business to earn a living, after searching endlessly for a job. He said, Ochiedike has been owing me close to N400,000 since May last year and I have been out of business since then because I started with money I saved during my youth service. I don’t know what else to do. I borrowed money to come to Ochiedike from Orlu on more than 20 occasions, only to be told that there was no money to pay me. Honestly, this is wickedness at its peak. They said I should produce evidence of the transaction, I did, yet I have not been paid a kobo since then. How do they expect me to survive and plan my future another supplier, a retired civil servant said, he regrets having any transaction with Ochiedike. “I am only asking to be paid for the much I supplied because Dr. Iheanyi Nwachukwu has really dealt with me. I can no longer feed my family, while creditors are chasing me around”.
The suppliers and some staff of the centre who are in sympathy with their plight have vowed to expose Iheanyi Nwachukwu led management and all their shady deals which they have verifiable proof and evidence of, if the suppliers’ payment is delayed much longer.
When contacted, Dr. Iheanyi Nwachukwu confirmed that they are owing some suppliers and promised to pay them within 2 weeks. Our investigation reveals that none of them has been paid till date.
The suppliers and some staff of the centre who are in sympathy with their plight have vowed to open a can of worms and expose all the shady deals of the Dr. Iheanyi management which they claimed having evidence of the suppliers’ payment are delayed much longer.