John Bosco Ozelle, the officer in charge of criminal investigations at Gulu Central Police Station explains that the suspect visited the school in Odek Sub-county and started giving the children a concoction of herbs that he claims cures the nodding disease.
A lecturer of the Mbale based Marcus Pan African University has been arrested in Gulu for administering herbs to nodding disease patients. 73-year-old Gad Okello was arrested after administering herbs to six children of Aromo-wang-lobo primary school who are suffering from nodding disease. John Bosco Ozelle, the officer in charge of criminal investigations at Gulu Central Police Station explains that the suspect visited the school in Odek Sub-county and started giving the children a concoction of herbs that he claims cures the nodding disease.
He says the school authorities got concerned and alerted police leading to the arrest of the suspect. Ozelle says that Okello was found in possession of different herbs. He says the suspect will be charged with possession of illegal classified drugs and practicing medicine without a valid license. Santo Okello, the Headmaster Aromo-wang-lobo Primary School says he got suspicious when the pupils alerted him that someone had entered the class and was giving them medicine for nodding disease.
He says he confronted Okello, who told him that was a qualified herbalist who had treated thousands of people with symptoms similar to the nodding disease. Okello says the suspect told him that the drug which he was giving the children is called ‘Liraquine’ aa concoction that he believes cures nodding disease. But the suspect told URN in an exclusive interview inside police cells, that he was simply carrying out aresearch on the effectiveness of his concoction that he has developed with the aim of curing the symptoms of nodding disease.
Okello who claims to be a lecturer of herbal medicine and food storage at Marcus African University in Mbale says that he has read extensively about the nodding disease in the media and believes his concoction can cure it. He claims that he realized that most of the symptoms of nodding disease like high temperature are symptoms of malaria and elephantiasis which his ‘liraquine’ can treat. He says he is bitter that police has humiliated a man of his stature who has taught for so long having been a lecturer at Nairobi University also.
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He claims to have taught industrial fine art at Nairobi University for several years before retiring back to Lira town where he now conducts research on traditional medicine while part timing as a lecturer with Mbale based Macus University. On his education, he claims to have an honors degree in Industrial Fine Art and a diploma in education.
He also claims to have worked closely with National Drug Authority-NDA and that he recently helped them to organize a meeting with herbalists at all St. University in Lira, a claim that could not be independently verified by our reporter.
The police have taken his concoction to the government national analytical laboratories in Wandegeya for analysis.
ministry of health