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Ashanti Region NSS boss suspended for two months without pay over verbal assault of nurse

BY: Kweku Zurek
The Ashanti Regional Director of the National Service Scheme, Alex Opoku-Mensah
The Ashanti Regional Director of the National Service Scheme, Alex Opoku-Mensah

The Ashanti Regional Director of the National Service Scheme, Alex Opoku-Mensah has been suspended for two months without salary for verbally assaulting a nurse at the Manhyia District Hospital in Kumasi.

The suspension is part of three recommendations made by a Committee of Enquiry which investigated the incident which led to calls for his dismissal by the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association (GRNMA).

The three recommendations which include a transfer to the Head Office in Accra to work under supervision after the suspension and the rendering of an official apology to the National Service Scheme have all been approved by the Ghana National Service Scheme (GNSS) Governing Board.

Mr Opoku-Mensah was suspended temporarily on December 1, 2022, to make way for investigations following the incident which happened on Sunday, November 27, 2022.

After analyzing the content of the audio between Mr Opoku-Mensah and the Nurse, the management of the NSS found him to be in breach of the Code of Conduct of the Ghana National Service Scheme (GNSS) and the Public Services generally, and consequently suspended him, for the Committee made up of representatives from the Public Services Commission, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health, National Labour Commission and the GNSS, to investigate the matter and submit recommendations within one month.

"After two (2) weeks of sitting and a visit to the Manhyia District Hospital, the Committee submitted its report to Management on Monday, 19th December, 2022 for subsequent referral to the GNSS Governing Board," the GNSS said in a press release issued today.

"At its sitting on Wednesday 21st December 2022, the Board extensively deliberated the report and unanimously approved the Committee’s recommendations as follows:

i. Mr. Alex Opoku-Mensah should be suspended for two (2) calendar months without pay.

ii. After the suspension, Mr. Opoku Mensah should be moved to the Head Office to work under supervision; and

iii. Mr. Opoku-Mensah should be made to issue an official apology to the National Service Scheme for bringing the name of the institution into disrepute.

The GNSS management said it was taking the steps to ensure that all the directives of the Board are complied with.

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Background

The incident happened at the Manhyia District Hospital in Kumasi last Sunday, November 27, 2022.

It is an exchange of words between a doctor’s father - Alex Opoku-Mensah - (the doctor is a house officer at the Manhyia Hospital) and a nurse.

The nurse is said to have called the house officer (doctor) on the said Sunday to come over and delete a prescription from the E-Health system since the prescription was unissued to the patient.

This according to the nurse was to help prevent the patient from being billed with the unissued prescription.

The father of the doctor, Alex Opoku Mensah who seemed not happy with the way and manner the nurse called and the alleged language used over the phone, followed the daughter to the hospital and the following exchanges in the audio ensued [AUDIO of exchanges attached below].

Mr Opoku Mensah has since apologised for his action.