Controversy Over Death Of Lagos Chef

Lagos chef, Mrs Peju Ugboma straightnews
Lagos chef, Mrs Peju Ugboma

Controversy seems to dog the death of Lagos chef, Mrs Peju Ugboma, who died at a Lagos hospital following a surgical operation.

Ugboma, 41, who is famous for her Lagos Menu “I luv desserts,” was reported to have died on April 25 at the Premier Specialist Hospital in Victoria Island, Lagos, after undergoing an elective hysterectomy surgery.

At least, 3,000 people signed an online petition urging the Lagos State Government and the Ministry of Health to investigate the death of Ugboma.

The Lagos State Government, in its official Twitter account, directed the Health Facility Monitoring and Accreditation Agency to conduct a proper investigation into the death of the chef.

In a statement on Tuesday in Lagos, Olisa Agbakoba (SAN), who is the lead counsel in the case, has requested a coroner’s inquest into Ugboma said that having been briefed by the family of the deceased, he had taken steps to request an inquest to determine the cause of the death.

Agbakoba said his law firm had already requested an independent autopsy for which the report was awaited, while petitions had been sent to the office of the Attorney-General of Lagos State, the Consumers Protection Council, Nigeria Medical Association and state House of Assembly amongst others.

Agbakoba said that a petition to the Homicide Department of the Nigeria Police, Panti was also under consideration.

“We have also sent a letter to the Executive Secretary, Lagos State Health Facilities, Monitoring and Accreditation Agency, requesting an inspection of the hospital’s facilities as well as requesting a temporary closure of the hospital.

“We request inspection of the hospital’s facilities, as well as a confirmation of the hospital’s licence and accreditation to perform a major operation.

“Hysterectomy is a major surgery carrying the possibility of blood clots, severe infections, hemorrhage, bowel obstruction or urinary tract injury.

“Premier Hospital had no CT scan equipment and blood bank when it carried out the operation on the chef.

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“A thorough investigation of Ugboma’s death will be conducted; doctors ought to be held accountable for medical negligence and malpractices,” he said.

Addressing newsmen on Tuesday, Mr I.J Ugboma, husband of the deceased, said the family not only sought justice for their daughter but also for thousands of victims of faulty healthcare system.

Meanwhile, the Premier Specialists Medical Centre, has pleaded with the public to allow relevant authorities conduct thorough investigation into the cause of death of Ugboma.

The management of the hospital made the plea in a statement signed by Dr. Chineze Fadipe, a Consultant Paediatrician with the hospital, on Tuesday in Lagos.

Fadipe, in the statement, appealed to the public against exacerbating the grief of the deceased patient’s family with “unfounded rumours and unsubstantiated facts.”

Ugboma’s family had alleged that their daughter died due to negligence of health officials at the Premier Specialist Medical Centre in Victoria Island, where she had surgery for fibroid.

Fadipe said that management of the centre was saddened by the death of Ugboma, and expressed its condolences to the deceased’s family.

She said: “The hospital welcomes all statutory inquiries, and is currently fully cooperating with the relevant regulatory bodies as it is the protocol in cases of this nature. “It intends to keep doing so until a conclusion is reached.”

Fadipe said that ethics of the medical profession does not allow the hospital to breach a client’s confidentiality, even in the extreme case of death.

She said that in a bid to enforce the ethical clause of confidentiality, the hospital would not be able to respond to the various enquiries by the media.  (NAN)