About a decade ago – at the early stage of my union to Queen Rasheedah – I fell ill and was eventually diagnosed of appendicitis. Without ado, perhaps as symptoms were worryingly and scarily manifested, I was recommended for an immediate surgical operation. Since the hospital didn’t have the required facility for such an obligation, a referral to a general hospital was done. Relief pills were administered to sail me through the killing agonies of stomach ache until the next day I was moved to the theatre for the real deal.

The surgeons were about knocking me off when power got interrupted. I didn’t know the implication until one of them involuntarily expressed her disappointment. She did so shouting above her voice. A call was instantaneously put to the technical department to know what actually went wrong.

“You knew today was our day and you placed us on PHCN! When last did we use that for surgery?” she said, shouting disturbingly. “We are sorry, ma. It wasn’t PHCN, It was generator,” replied the head of the Technical Unit (I guess). “If we were on generator as usual, why the uninformed interruption?” probed madam surgeon. “It was diesel, ma. It got exhausted,” he answered. “What! Then put another one now!” she reacted worried. Perhaps the surgeons had forgotten I was still conscious. If not, they would have cautioned the woman to take it calm and pretend all was well. “Yes, ma. Somebody has gone for the diesel.” “You mean there is no diesel in your reservoir?” “The guy will soon be back, ma.”

Such is the porousness of our health sector – one of the reasons our leaders go abroad to heal themselves of even very slight illnesses. It is because they know how bad our hospitals are. And rather than rejuvenate them with standard equipment, they corner, peculate the money to enrich themselves and their families. Thieves! Barawo! Oole!

A Vice-president some years ago slipped at the gym and the next thing was to seek medical attention abroad. Ordinary slip! What if the head was hit on the floor? He would find his way to the heavens, right? Rubbish! The same person had his child hit by the deadly coronavirus, and the victim is being treated somewhere in the country. Has he no money to fly him as usual? Hmm! May Allah heal him and others afflicted with the virus.

Mr President too had sought medical attention abroad to heal himself of pains in his ears. If he had believed in the efficiency of the doctors in his led-country and the effectiveness of the equipment in our hospitals, he wouldn’t have run abroad. Remember when I had a block in my right ear and I could barely hear with it, I got my healing at a general hospital in Lagos through the application of ear syringe which was used to flush out the dirts. It wasn’t easy though, but I was okay in the end.

Now that the Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) is hitting developed countries more, where will our covetous, rapacious, voracious leaders run to if they are afflicted with the pandemic? They will apparently be the most afraid now, not the poor.

This is a lesson to our leaders: that our resources should now be channelled towards resuscitating our dwindled health sector. Our hospitals should be well equipped, internationally standard, subsidized and affordable ones should be built and the workers therein handsomely remunerated so that they do more than paid for. It should be bye-bye to seeking medical attention abroad.

I pray Allah make us scale through this trying time.


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