Limpopo doctor's suspension after arrest for drug trafficking

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Limpopo Health will suspend a community service doctor who was arrested after he was found in possession of nyaope and dagga. Dr Mpho Lekalakala was arrested on Wednesday of last week, News24 report.

Provincial health spokesperson Thabiso Teffo said they were disappointed that an official who had been tasked with the responsibility of healing a society was involved in a process that reversed their gains. "We are going to suspend the official and report this behaviour (to the Health Professions Council of SA) to conduct a parallel investigation," said Teffo.

"Whilst we respect the notion of innocent until proven guilty, we are very disappointed and disturbed at the prospect of a medical doctor helping to distribute illicit drugs."

The report says Lekalakala, 34, appeared briefly in the Hlanganani Magistrate's Court and will appear again on 1 August. Police spokesperson Moatshe Ngoepe said they had tracked the suspect after receiving a tip off. He said upon arrival they found the suspect and his accomplice.

The doctor was charged with drug dealing. During the arrest, nine sachets of nyaope, four rocks, two smoking pipes and an undisclosed amount of dagga were found.

A local organisation, Bethesda, which deals with drugs and substance abuse, said in the report that the area had been crippled by the easy access to drugs. Bethesda secretary Khuthadzo Ravhutendele said drug dealers were targeting school-going children, saying most cases were reported or traced from local schools. "We believe that there are drug dealers, who distribute drugs to runners in schools and villages," said Ravhutendele said in the report.

News24 report

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