A GROUP of intoxicated youths in Gizo, Western Province, have verbally threatened to kill a group of nurses and medical officers on Monday night after they were refused a ride on a medical vehicle.
Reports reaching Solomon Star Gizo said the incident occurred about 12 midnight when the nurses were returning to their homes after their shift ended at 11pm.
Onboard the 3-tonne vehicle were eight nurses, a receptionist, two hospital security officers, plus the driver.
One of the eight nurses told Solomon Star Gizo that, “on our way past the Chan Corp and Jonini shops, the group of youths jumped onto the back of the vehicle when it was slowing down.
“There were five of them and they jumped aboard without our permission and told us to drop them off at their various destinations.”
Most of the boys were said to be living at the Banana Valley District and Top Hill residential areas.
At that time, the driver immediately stopped the vehicle, went out and calmly appealed to the boys to get off because he was dropping of nurses and other medical staff.
He told the youths that such behaviour can cause an accident.
The driver further expressed to them that if an accident happened to them, the nurses and medical officers and health authorities will be blamed.
“So, for their safety, the driver told them not to jump in and also politely told them there was a woman and staff nurses onboard.
“He insisted that he would not pick up drunkards and that the truck is not a public vehicle,” the nurse said.
That was when the youths shouted threatening words to kill them if their request was unheeded.
“The boys then verbally threatened all of us in the truck. They threatened to kill the driver and all of us onboard the medical truck,” the nurse said.
There was shouting by the youths and this scared us during their brief confrontation with the driver.
Fortunately, a police patrol vehicle passed by and immediately stopped in front of the medical truck and the police officers managed to apprehend three of the boys, handcuffed them and threw them into the back of their vehicle and left. The others were hunted down that night.
The nurse, meanwhile, expressed concern over such behaviour, saying it does speak well of the township.
The nurse said it is important for the public in Gizo, especially youths, to have some respect for government workers and properties and other people.
“It is so sad that many times, young people, especially boys, have this bad behavior towards government, private and even public vehicles.
“It is important that community leaders, church leaders, teachers, parents and relevant authorities like police to instill in them respect for others.”
The nurse also highlighted the need to respect nurses and medical officers because of the important role they play in looking after the sick.
“Respect our medical workers. They are our life protectors. Without them, the sick would not be treated.”
During the argument, the youths also shouted saying they do not care about the nurses and the medical truck.
“Mind what you say against our nurses because one day, you never know, you might be admitted at Gizo hospital or any other health facility.
“The nurses will be ones taking care of you. So, have some respect for them. Never intimidate them,” the nurse said.
The nurse, who has been in Gizo only a few months ago, described the incident as sad and shocking as most of those in the vehicle were female.
Other reports reaching Solomon Star Gizo said the boys have been drinking homebrew and roaming the township since Monday afternoon.
It was claimed that the majority of the youths are from an island in the province who continued to cause disturbance to the provincial township’s residents.
By MOFFAT MAMU