A Queen Mamohato Memorial Hospital (QMMH) nurse has been arrested for illegally attempting to apply for a passport on behalf of a foreign national.
In a statement this week, the Ministry of Home Affairs said the nurse visited their offices in Maseru on Friday and misrepresented that a Mosotho patient at the hospital needed a passport to enable him to seek treatment in South Africa.
It is alleged that the nurse falsely claimed that the patient had been referred to South Africa by the hospital but he was too ill to come in person to apply for the passport.
The nurse allegedly produced fraudulent documents indicating that the patient was a Lesotho national when in actual fact the person in question was a foreign national. The fake documents included an “identity document” which bore the face of the foreign national, who is now at large, but with the names of a Lesotho national who is now deceased.
In addition, the nurse also produced a fake letter from the hospital which had been purportedly written in support of the passport application.
QMMH public relations officer, Thakane Mapeshoane-Sepipi, confirmed the weekend arrest of the nurse, saying they were collaborating with the police and the Home Affairs ministry in their investigations.
Ms Sepipi said the nurse had confessed to the crime in a Monday meeting with the police and home affairs officials.
“The nurse produced fake documents at home affairs,” Ms Sepipi said, adding, “we don’t have such a patient”.
“The suspect admitted to the crime and the Ministry of Home Affairs opened a case at the police’s satellite station at the hospital on Monday. The suspect was taken into police custody. The nursing department said they would take the issue up with the Lesotho Nursing Council (LNC),” Ms Sepipi added.
Police spokesperson Senior Superintendent Mpiti Mopeli confirmed the arrest of the suspect, saying she would soon appear in court.