A former private school teacher down with kidney problem is calling for help in order to live a normal life again. IDACHABA SUNNY ELEOJO reports.
Health, they say is wealth. That is why there are calls on everyone to guard their health jealously against any disease especially terminal ones.
While some persons contact deadly or terminal sicknesses due to reckless lifestyle, for others, it is not clear how they contact it and are compelled to live with the condition for the rest of their lives because of financial constraint while those with the wherewithal have the opportunity of a second chance due to their access to any available medics anywhere in the world.
For Mr Kayode Ojo Komolafe, a native of Umu Ekiti in Ekiti East local government of Ekiti state, except Nigerians come to his aid, he has come to the end of the road as far as living a normal life is concerned. This is because since June 2021 when he was diagnosed of acute kidney failure, it seems he is only waiting to breathe his last, but according to him,” I am appealing to Nigerians to please help me so that I can live my normal life again. I am not a lazy man; I want to go back to work again and the only way I can do that is when I can regain my health again. That is why I am sending this message to Nigerians.”
When it all started
In a chat with Blueprint, he disclosed that as at May 2021, he took ill and was admitted at the Kubwa General Hospital in Abuja for malaria-related ailment; however, after a few days, the doctors said they could no longer keep him there because his condition was more than they expected as his blood level was far below 13 percent.
He said, “They now referred me to the Specialist Hospital in Gwagwalada. It was while there that the specialist, after series of tests, discovered that my two kidneys had actually packed up. They said one is completely damaged while the other one is relatively shorter and smaller.
Speaking further he said, “The doctors said my only chance of survival is either through constant dialysis or a complete kidney transplant. This was in June 2021. Because I could not afford the cost of a transplant, I resorted for constant dialysis twice a week there in Gwagwalada, but in the wake of the strike by doctors, I could no longer continue there; so I was advised to visit Carolina Hospital, a private one in Apo District, Abuja. There the cost, unlike the Specialist Hospital in Gwagwalada, is so expensive.
Speaking in an emotion-laden voice he said, “In all of this, my wife is the only support I have had. She works in a private mission school, but has been stressed beyond limits as we speak. Few former friends also come in to assist from time to time, but they too are almost tired.”
Mr Komolafe, a 1997 graduate of English from the prestigious University of Ibadan said he was a teacher in Oasis International College in Lugbe Abuja when he was diagnosis of this condition, the school proprietress asked him to go and take care of himself, but failed to assist him with anything and even stopped his salary.
“I was teaching English and Literature in SSS3 besides managing the primary section as head of school, but that was not enough for the school management as they asked me to leave and since then, my salary was stopped. When I asked why, the proprietress said I am not entitled to any salary since I am no longer working despite my condition that she was aware of.
“At the moment, the condition has really brought me down to the level of begging for everything. As it is, I can no longer walk well; don’t have strength to do anything any longer. If I don’t do dialysis two times in a week, my legs would be swollen; so also my body. To that extent, I find it difficult to move freely. At times, I will have shortage of blood and breath.
Giving a breakdown of his condition further he said, “Twice I do dialysis and each session costs 70,000 naira because since I have shortage of blood problem, I have to buy blood which is at 20,000. Besides that, the access that is connected to the machine cannot be used twice, so for each session, I have to procure a new one. That makes it totally almost 160,000 weekly. If Nigerians do not help me, how can I afford this? My wife alone cannot carry this responsibility; she is almost tired.
In an emotion laded-worded voice to his governor, he said, To my governor, His Excellency, Dr Kayode Fayemi, I am appealing both to you and the state government to help me to live again. Your Excellency, you are known to be a man with milk of human kindness. I am appealing that you would extend your hand of assistance to me. Your wife is also someone known to be of assistance to people in similar situation. Her Excellency, please come to my aid so that I don’t die in this situation, but get out and live a normal life again.
“I am also appealing to my former governor, His Excellency Ayo Fayose. I know even out of office, your milk of human compassion has not dried up. Please help me as one of your subjects. To my lawmakers, my appeal goes to you also. I am one of your constituents but this sickness wants to drive me to my early graves. With your assistance, I know I can have back my health again. My appeal also goes to spirited Nigerians to assist me in whatever way possible.
“Like I said earlier, the doctors said I have two options: Either the dialysis has to continue for the rest of my life or I do a kidney transplant. These two options require huge amount. It’s now left for me to decide which one I can go for depending on the availability of funds. I can be reached on 08068488855 for assistance,” he said.
While commenting on kidney-related ailments, a doctor with Skycare Clinic Ilupeju in Lagos, Dr Eishet Asuquo said kidney failure is a lethal sickness with death as its outcome, but with a deep pocket, it can be managed.
“Many of the sufferers of this illness die because they cannot afford the treatment and management, that is why some persons die prematurely otherwise many ‘big men’ have this condition, but they manage their condition without any noise,” he said.
As it is, Mr Komolafe who resides in Dutse Abuja, like many other sufferers of this ailment is equally calling on the government to help scale down the cost of dialysis in the country so that many Nigerians in this condition like him would not die prematurely.