By Kingsley Ahanonu
So pathetic that Dr. Adadevoh lost out. She became the latest casualty of the Patrick Sawyer’s bio-terrorism. It was dispiriting to learn of the death of the doctor. Stella contracted the disease in the course of exercising her duty on Mr. Sawyer. By her death, the Nigerian health sector nay government have failed to make up for their heinous mistake of exposing the medic to the grave usurper that mowed her.
They are to blame for not taking the necessary action in checking inflights from Ebola hotspots. They are culpable in that on discovering how feeble Sawyer was and knowing he had come from Liberia, they failed, on taking him to the hospice, to alert the management of their susceptibility of the patient for Ebola. And when the deed was done, Nigeria again failed to do the needful- in prevailing on the U.S. to send them the ZMapp even if it is one; at least to save this great fighter. They failed her; they failed us. I weep for Ms Adadevoh! I cry for her sacrifice unappreciated. So pathetic.
As the first health care provider who treated the Liberian-American and raised public alarm over the plot by the Liberian officials to contrive the release of the patient for the planned calabar conference; and thus, stalled the prospect of an outstretched transmission, she should have won the sympathy of the Americans, for her outstanding resoluteness, to have made available for her the experimental ZMapp.
The defeat of Stella by Mr. Ebola more so in the line of duty is bound to reflect on the general commitments of health care givers. It definitely would lead to exasperation amongst practitioners; a case of widespread distrust in the ability of government to come in for them when hooked.
Consequently, the sad death of this mother of one raises more questions. How will the death of Ms Stella be viewed amongst her colleagues? How will she be looked at, if not as a foolhardy, who risked life for a country that doesn’t care. Though that on itself my sound so crude, but it is a consequence of the impression from the government; something not far from a reflection of the truth as would be obtained within such circle. Her death, instead of spurring her colleagues, will necessitate a gagging feel of demoralization; from no fault of hers but by the palpable lack of concern from the powers that ought to be concerned.
Among the outside Nigerian community, it raises an issue over the sense in evincing patriotism and commitment to the course of fatherland. Who would actually want to die for a country that lacks the acumen to appreciate selfless service? Who would want to die ‘wastefully’? Adadevoh served Nigeria gallantly via her calling. If not for her circumspection, what we are talking now in terms of spread and contact-tracing would have been unbearably nasty. But in all these, how was she paid back? She was allowed to die not without a shown effort by the state to get her a drop of the life-saving drug. When we consider the effort of Liberia, which took advantage of the reality of a drug, solicited for theirs and received positive response from the United State government, we would wonder at the laxity of the so-called giant of Africa.
If not for anything, Ms Stella should not have been allowed to battle the viral infection solely with her body defence. For a country that cares, committed effort would have gone the way of doing the best by all means possible. When two Americans went down with Ebola, we saw the reaction of a country that cares for her ‘humanitarian citizens’. Not Nigeria; she can’t afford to sideline corruption for humanitarian gestures.
Even as the feel may direct, the consultant endocrinologist did not die in vain; at least to all discerning Nigerians of goodwill. Instead she threw the curtain as a heroine; deeming extolment. But, all the same, God knows the best. Though Nigeria may not have valued you, Nigerians prayed for you and will sorely miss you. You would be remembered; you died a heroine. May your soul find a gentle repose!
Ahanonu Kingsley wrote in from Owerri