A 42-year-old mother of two, suffering from life-threatening kidney failure, is appealing to the security agencies to apprehend a con man who has been preying on persons suffering from Kidney failure at the Korle-Bu Teaching hospital.
Veronica Boadu, who is also appealing to the general public to help her raise Gh˘55,000 to undertake a kidney transplant, says the security agencies must act with dispatch to stop other hapless citizens from falling victim to the nefarious activities of the quack who is taking undue advantage of people in need.
Known differently as Mike, Owusu and Mensah, the con man, whom Mrs Boadu described as short, dark and stout, has even extended his con activities to Adom FM’s morning show programme Dwaso Nsem and its host, Adakabri Frimpong Manso.
Representing himself as a friend of the station and its host, the suspected fraudster charged at least one victim facilitation fees to meet the host and also appear on the show to make a public appeal for funds.
According to Veronica Boadu, who staggered into the studios of Adom FM on Wednesday March 13, 2013 after countless excuses and postponements of her date with the microphones, she was charged Ghc1,100 (11 million old Ghana Cedis) to meet with Mr. Frimpong-Manso and book an appointment to appear on the show.
‘Mike’ claimed Adakabre was his good friend, but the veteran broadcaster has vehemently denied knowing any such person.
According to Veronica Boadu, ‘Mike’ also promised to arrange meetings with high profile persons including the Asantehene and Pastor Mensah Otabil of International Central Gospel Church to whom she appeal for help.
Outlining the con man’s modus operandi, Ms Boadu – whose two kidneys are all defective for which she has been on dialysis for the past three years - said information about possible help from ‘Mike’ was passed on by a number of young men and Mike’s wife who sell kidney drugs around the Renal Dialysis Unit of the Department of medicine at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital.
‘Mike’, who bears the scars of a successful kidney transplant, then tells the victim he can facilitate a successful kidney transplant in a hospital in India at a cheap rate, much lower than the Ghc55,000 (550 million old cedis) required for the procedure at Korle-bu. But first, if the victim has no donor, ‘Mike’ charges $10,000 to find a donor.
He will warn his victims against informing any official at the Korle-Bu hospital about their plans to travel to India for the kidney transplants. He convinces them that if the hospital staff become aware of such plans, they would discourage them from going in order that Korle-Bu would continue to receive the monthly payment of Ghc2, 500 on medications and the use of the Dialysis machine.
Eventually, the con man collects a minimum of Ghc1,000 to procure a birth certificate and passport, and $375 to procure a visa from the Indian Embassy. After taking this money he will start giving one reason or another for the delay in leaving for India for the transplant and then eventually he will abscond.
Ms Boadu claimed her investigations had shown that ‘Mike’ had been running a similar con system in Kumasi and was now ‘expanding’ it.
A listener who phoned in from Winneba, Stanley, recounted how through ‘Mike’s dubious activities his boss died after he fell victim to his nefarious activities.
Veronica Boadu, bearing a letter from the Korle-Bu teaching hospital, has however appealed to kind hearted Ghanaians both home and abroad, to help her undertake the operation and stay alive to take care of her two children.
The letter, signed on behalf of Dr Charlotte Osafo (Nephrologist/Consultant) at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital on 26th November 2012 read: “Medical report re: Veronica Boadu – 42 years “The above named person is a known patient in our Renal Dialysis Unit of the Department of medicine at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital. She has end-stage renal disease.
“She has been undergoing haemodialysis three times a week, and receiving other medications for the past two years.
“It is advised that the patient must continue treatment in order to stay alive, active and productive in whatever ventures she may wish to engage in.
“But the best solution is Kidney Transplant and she desiring to have a kidney transplant which will cost Ghc55,000.
“Kindly extend to her the necessary assistance she needs. Many thanks.”