Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Nigeria Sickle Cell Anemia Patients Petition President Buhari to Probe Sickle Cell Foundations’

Aisha Edward reading the petition


A group of sickle cell anemia patients under the auspices of ‘the Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Disorder (APLSCD) have petitioned President Muhammadu Buhari to probe and de-register all the Non-governmental organizations/foundations bearing sickle cells as a matter of immediacy.

APLSCD equally urged the government at all levels, philanthropists, religious and the general public to shun the so-called foundations, and rather deal with them directly through their association which constitute mainly the sickle cell patients, because according to them, the so-called NGOs fraudulently solicit and pocket trillions of naira generously donated for sicklers from all over the world.

Entitled “Letter of displeasure at the unjust treatment meted out to the people living with sickle cell disorder in Nigeria, especially in the South Eastern and Northern zones by numerous NGOS and prominent among them, the Founder of Sickle Cell Foundation, Nigeria – Prof. Olu Akiyanju, the petition was addressed to the Federal Ministry of Health, copied to President Muhammadu Buhari, Committee of Health Senate National Assembly Abuja, Committee of Health House of Rep. National Assembly Abuja, Economic Financial Crime Commission, Nigeria Guild of Editors, Nigeria Union of Journalists, Nigerian Bar Association, Anambra State House of Assembly, Enugu State House of Assembly, Imo State House of Assembly, Ebonyi State House of Assembly, Abia State House of Assembly, Imo State Commissioner for Health, Anambra State Commissioner for Health, Ebonyi State Commissioner for Health, Abia State Commissioner for Health, and Enugu State Commissioner for Health.
It also lamented over the rate at which sickle cell babies are still being born daily in the country despite the existence of the several NGOs, which had thrive for decades in the name of Sickle Cell Disorder and Sickle Cell Patients, wondering if the public have been brainwashed to forget that “Sickle Cell Anemia remains the number one most silent killer in the prime, the most painful  and frustrating health status of a lifetime, the most abused as well as most unavoidable scourge in the world especially black Africa in general and Nigeria in particular”.

Presenting the petition on behalf of the group at Awka on Tuesday, Aisha Edward, the Coordinator of APLSCD disclosed that over 170 registered sicklers have died in Anambra State in the past three years, adding that there are more sickle Cell patients in their youth in the country yet more babies patients are being born everyday as couples with incompatible genotypes are being joined in 'holy' matrimony by clerics in the name of blind love and ‘God’s’ miracle.
Hence, Aisha, while appealing to religious institutions and schools to duly demand, scrutinize and certified genotypes reports of intending couples and students before wedding or admitting them, charged medical practitioners to desist from giving false information to lovebirds for whatever reason.
She further added that they are tired of hiding their identities for fear of victimization while watching “a most dastardly, most wicked, most evil act being perpetuating and worn out of being used as lab rats by ill-intentioned laboratory scientists and egotistical, self deluded, fraudulent religious leaders”, and would fight it with the last blood in their veins, last breath in their lungs, and the last strength they can summon from the hell of a soma volitionally given to them by their parents in the name of love.
Continuing, she said: “NGOs have been inflicting them with pains - emotional and psychological, we demand they be forestalled from representing us. We demand for thorough probe of the activities of sickle cell foundation, Nigeria and every other foundation having the nomenclature 'sickle cell' attached to it. We, the real sufferers of Sickle Cell Anemia declare these Nongovernmental organizations our primary enemies as they have been the eclipse blocking the rays from well meaning people all over the world and the government from getting to us and the Cause of cessation of production of Sickle Cell Babies - the height of man's inhumanity to his fellow man.
“These foundations are the reason we still have many frustrated sickle cell patients who live a life of hiding in the shadows, pill popping self pity and drug addiction. We hereby demand that all welfare services due to us be channeled through our places of worship - churches, mosques, e.t.c and the expenditure monitored. We demand that Sickle Cell Anemia be given the same status of emergency as was given to Ebola virus and Bird flu and laws passed and enforced nationwide barring intending couples who are not compatible genotype-wise from being joined in marriage with immediate effect.
“We passionately, demand that a nationwide free medical health insurance scheme card be distributed to all Sickle Cell Patients to ensure that the ulcerations, psychological impairment and constant crises associated with their status be given first class medical attention as this alone can restore their sense of humanity and go a long way in reducing the rate of suicide occurring among them these days, thereby securing the high level of intellectual cum creative ingenuity reside among Sickle Cell patients. We also demand that all young Sickle Cell patients be given priority in empowerment programs nationwide as is being championed by the ANAMBRA State government today”, they concluded.



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