Mpumalanga police arrest fake pharmacist

Police in Mpumalanga have warned the public not to purchase medication from unauthorised people.

This comes after a bogus pharmacist was arrested on Thursday on allegations of unlawfully selling schedule 6 medication to the public in Middleburg, during an intelligence-driven operation.

Provincial South African Police Service (SAPS) spokesperson, Brigadier Selvy Mohlala said: “According to the report, information regarding a suspect (24) selling certain medication to people without legal authorisation was brought to the attention of the members, supplied by the Intelligence structure of the police in the province. An operation was then planned to be executed today.”

After police obtained a search warrant, resources were mobilised, he said.

“Members of the police operationalised the said information and proceeded to certain premises in Middleburg. Upon arrival, the suspect was found and a search of the premises was conducted whereby the medication valued at about R7000 was discovered.

“The suspect was then arrested and charged accordingly for illegal possession of schedule 6 medication. Preliminary investigation by the police has since revealed that the suspect is an employee at a certain nutrition shop in the area. Police are working in collaboration with other relevant stakeholders within the health sector and the man could possibly be faced with more charges as the investigation continues,” Mohlala said.

The suspect is expected to appear in the Middelburg Magistrate's Court soon.

Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela, welcomed and urged the public to help dismantle the underground market of unauthorised distribution of medical health items by not buying the medication.

"We would like to warn people to stop gambling with their lives when it comes to issues of health. The public should be extra careful when it comes to being medically treated or receiving any medication from suspicious individuals.

“Being ignorant can place someone's life in danger and members of the public should rather use the public health facilities or legitimate private health facilities than taking an easier route which can be detrimental to their health," he warned.

Source: South African Government News Agency