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Flying Doctors Nigeria steps up to save sickle cell patient



sickle cell

In desperate need of surgery to alleviate the ravages of sickle cell disease and previous medical care that worsened his condition, university student Abiodun Bakare was about to give up hope when he discovered the cost of his surgery would be N18 million (about $50,000).

Bakare, his family and friends had done their research and discovered that a hospital in India could provide him with the care he needed, but the cost of the care and the journey was well beyond his reach.

Digging deeper, Bakare was determined to solve his challenge locally, and finally his search connected him with a hospital in Nigeria’s northern state of Sokoto where medical experts agreed to perform the operation for a nominal fee.

Bakare’s friends jumped in, launched a social media fundraising campaign, and pulled together the money needed for the operation. However, Bakare still had to overcome one huge hurdle: how to get to the hospital.

The 18-hour overland journey was out of the question due to Bakare’s critical condition. Fortunately, a friend stepped in again and discovered a solution: Flying Doctors Nigeria, which agreed to fly Bakare to the hospital free of charge. The offer reduced a journey that would have taken longer than a day, to just over an hour.

“I knew we had to support Bakare with air ambulance services because it would have been impossible for the student to pull together the funds to pay for the service,” explained Dr Ola Brown, founder of Flying Doctors Nigeria, West Africa’s first and leading indigenous air ambulance service organisation.


The news came as a surprise to Bakare. “I didn’t even know there was an air ambulance service in Nigeria. I thought these services exist only in the Western world. My health condition opened my eyes to the fact that this kind of service is available in Nigeria,”Bakare later said.

He appreciates the support of Flying Doctors Nigeria and understands its value. “This is a journey that the firm could charge over a million naira for. It is still like a dream to me that this kind-hearted firm would intervene in my situation and provide their air ambulance services at no cost to me,” he added.

Dr Ola Brown says that there are a number of reasons air ambulance services are essential to both the patient in particular and the healthcare community in general.

“The first hours of an emergency situation are critical and the life of individuals shouldn’t depend on how far they live from the medical facility best equipped to handle their injury or illness,” she said. “And we know that the sooner patients receive the proper care, the sooner and better they recover,” she added.

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“Further, a firm like Flying Doctors Nigeria helps us solve the logistical problems involved in providing good healthcare in Nigeria, where the roads are often poor and the distances between the patient and healthcare are wide,” she explained. “Ultimately, this allows us to save money by centralising healthcare services.”

Bakare remains grateful. “I want to say thank you to Flying Doctors Nigeria for their support, and encourage other Nigerians to embrace this means of transporting critically ill patients, because if not for Flying Doctors Nigeria, I could have remained in my serious and painful medical condition.”

Dr Ola Brown established Flying Doctors Nigeria almost 10 years ago. Since then, the firm has saved lives across the West Africa sub-region, including infants, children, and pregnant women. Corporate organisations, such as those in the construction, mining, oil & gas industries, have also come to depend on the services of Flying Doctors Nigeria.

Born, raised and trained in the UK, Dr Ola Brown graduated as one of the youngest medical doctors in England. She is also a trainee helicopter pilot.She leads a team of 50 emergency healthcare professionals from the Flying Doctors Nigeria base at Murtala Mohammed Airport Lagos where their aircraft is located.


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UNN Gets New VIce Chancellor




The University of Nigeria Nsuka (UNN) has gotten a new Vice Chancellor (VC).

Professor Charles Igwe, was named the new VC of the institution of higher learning and its 15th Vice Chancellor.

The new helmsman is a professor of soil science. He made history as the first alumnus of the premier University to assume the post of Vice Chancellor.


Professor Charles Igwe, Vice Chancellor, UNN

Until his selection and appointment last month by the Governing Council, he was the Deputy Vice Chancellor, Administration.

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He took over from Professor Benjamin Ozumba whose tenure ended on Friday.

Speaking during  his inaugural address, Professor Igwe noted that the journey to the position was not an easy one.

According to him, “It is by the special grace of God that I emerged victorious and received my letter of appointment on that blessed day of May 23, 2019,” he said.

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He therefore promised to serve with due diligence and the fear of God, adding that it is hisi vision to propel the University of Nigeria Nsukka to a first-class University that is globally competitive in both contents and pragmatic delivery of teaching, learning and research outcomes.

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Shocker: Why Deeper Life Church Canceled Member’s Wedding




Wonders will never cease or how do you explain a church canceling the wedding of its members for the most unrealistic reason.

According to a report, Bolingo Israel and Okpokpolom Jemima members of Deeper Life Church allegedly got his wedding suspended for eating from the same plate.

The incident said to have happened a week before the couple’s wedding has been generating reaction on social media.

A Twitter user identified as @realoladele shared details of the incident. According to him, the couple were set to wed on Saturday, June 8 and held their traditional wedding on Friday, June 7.

According to him, during the course of the traditional wedding, they got a text saying that their wedding set to hold the next day had been suspended

Furthermore, the couple was placed on ‘discipline’ by the pastor. The incident is said to have occurred at Deeper Life Church in Bayelsa and all the arrangements made by the couple for the wedding day got wasted.

Report has it that the wedding was canceled by the pastor because the couple played the role of man and wife by eating from the same plate despite the fact that they were yet to be married.

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When the family of the couple reached out to the pastor, he refused on the basis that the couple ate from the same plate a week before they were joined in holy matrimony and for that reason have to be punished.

Reacting to the development, the church explained that contrary to reports, the couple had actually engaged in immoral acts after sleeping in the same bed and it amounted to sin. The church further explained that after feeling guilty and reporting themselves to their respective pastors, the couple was placed on disciplinary action by the state overseer.

After the church felt they had repented, the wedding was slated to hold again but was eventually suspended the second time after they discovered the couple had engaged in ‘acts contrary to the laid down procedure by the marriage committee of the church’. Concluding the statement, the church explained that it stands for holiness and members have been admonished to abstain from evil. The couple was also described to have behaved unseemingly and were in a haste to enjoy the benefits of married couples.

Read the statement below:

“The church has a Marriage Committee that supervises marriage right from knowing the will of God, to obtaining parents’ consent, marriage registration to church wedding. When the intending couples were told to go to Brass Region in Bayelsa state to obtain the man’s parents’ consent, they spent several days together before coming back to Yenagoa. They slept on the same bed and engaged in moral acts which amounted to sin and against the marriage process of the Church. They felt what they had done was bad and reported themselves to their pastors. They were subsequently placed on discipline by the State Overseer. After some period, reporting that they have repented, the courtship was allowed to commence again.

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As preparation for wedding was going on, it was discovered that they again engaged in acts contrary to the laid down procedure by the marriage committee of the church. This is after they had been disciplined earlier and warned not to engage in acts that will impact negatively on their proposed marriage. When the Marriage Committee put a direct question to them based on the latest development, the man accepted their error. It is important to note here, that the church stands on holiness and members have been consistently admonished to “abstain from all appearance of evil. It is not also true that the parents pleaded with the pastor to wed them on the 8th June, 2019. The summary is that they behaved themselves unseemingly, and were in haste to enjoy the benefits the church and God allow only married couples to enjoy.”

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Intrigues As Kebbi State Names New Chief Judge



Chief Judge

Kebbi State governor, Atiku Baguda, has named a new Chief Judge for the state.

Baguda named Sulaiman Ambursa pending confirmation by the state House of Assembly.

The appointment comes following the sack of Elizabeth Asabe Karatu the state’s former acting Chief Judge.

The general impression is that Karatu was axed because the state assembly did not confirm her name. However, she has maintained that she was sacked because of her Christian faith.

Ambursa was sworn-in a ceremony which held on Friday, June 14.

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Reacting to insinuations that the former Chief judge was sacked due to her religion, the governor of the state said: “It baffles me when I read a story on social media that I did not forward Karatu’s name for confirmation because of her religion. “If you could recall, I re-submitted the name of Karatu for the second time on June 2, 2018, to the House for confirmation as Chief Judge. “I was informed that on Aug. 1, 2018, the House refused to confirm her appointment over the alleged alteration of her date of birth and primary school certificate,” he explained.

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Further, he said that he lobbied the lawmakers to ensure Karatu was confirmed but all effort proved unsuccessful. He also disclosed how he wrote to the National Judicial Council (NJC) on his efforts to ensure Karatu was confirmed by the House without fruitful outcome, stressing that the refusal to confirm her was not based on her faith.

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