Nigerians will not continue to amaze me when in any situation or circunstance, novices, rookies, uneducated (the deplorables quoting US former presidential candidate Senator Hilary Clinton), the educated, ‘pundits,’ ‘wana-be’ journalists / photojournalists, ‘motivational speakers’ and ‘commentators’ suddenly turn into ‘experts’ in psychology, counselling, medical sciences, and law or all of the above in one individual with no clues on what he or she is talking about.
The irony is that you could easily read their sentiments and at the same time their tribal/religious/political undertones in what they claimed to be ‘experts’ on, while portraying further their weaknesses in passing biased judgement .
Today, Senator Ekweremadu’s predicament has opened up their open windows to manifest these sentiments that include also their political and tribal biases. However, I warn these ‘experts’ already passing judgement in a case they never heard both sides and on a matter before the court of law in a more developed country with more credible legal system to be careful. They must avoid taking sides or making any premature judgements until one hears both sides of the story or the decision of the court in alleged criminal conduct before the court.
Be aware that when it comes to human organ donations and human trafficking, the British system has laws on the procedures and legal precedents in case of any violations of the law on these matters. The laws in the USA is completely different from London. In the US, I have personally volunteered to donate organ to a brother in-law in Europe but before anything, he got a match from volunteer donor that he never met until after the donation. A Nigerian from my state and a family friend had a volunteer donor kidney who he never met before. Today he is living and his donor as well are doing well.
My nephew in Nigeria passed on in his early 30s while waiting for kidney organ donor. He was not lucky like my brother in law residing in Europe. He passed on few years back. May his soul continue to rest in peace with thousands that have died while waiting for organ donors.
Since I migrated to United States….each year when it is time to renew my driver’s license, I am asked (like other applicants) if I will like to be or renew my organ donor status,my response is always in the affirmative. Yes, meaning that any of my body part could be harvested on my volunteering either when I am alive or in case of emergency ( an incident) that leaves the donor’s body parts functioning while the brain has seized to function.
I volunteered for this humanitarian exercise without any pressure or monetary gains . I also asked my spiritual guide …my parish priest and other priests in my family and networks, and they agreed that my decision
is a priceless charitable gift (any one could give to his family or his neighbor in need). I was aware of the cultural limitations, innuendos, stereotypes, stigmas and silent ostracism associated with this type of decision, which I was told may make sense in the 19th century but has been overtaken by worldview, science and reality of life in the 21st century.
To cut my story short, all my driver’s licenses had and current one also has embedded inscription like any volunteer donor, the sticker on his or her driver’s license that reads volunteer ‘Organ Donor.’
Regrettably, Nigeria is a country where irrationality is rationalized, normality is abnormality and vice versa. It is these perspectives that force commentators dub Nigeria as an oxymoron. It is a space where there are no laws or rules about anything and if there is…it is not followed (obeyed) but violated by leaders that knew how these things work abroad but always fail to bring home the good ideas or things they witnessed or learned overseas home that would have reduced the shock or avoided the embarrassment that Senator Ike Ekweremadu and his wife are currently going through.
My prayers is that they overcome this situation, however, no matter how eventually they come of out this controversy ….the lesson to public office holders and leaders may have been learned and served. The lesson is bring order to your country, build medical facilities to save lives of the poor who could not afford medical tourism abroad, including organ donations and surgery centers to implant them.
Let our leaders build and create a society where there are rule of law and standards (including organ donors and recipients rights and regulations) as well in all aspects human lives and endeavors in our country.
Let our leaders like Senator Ike Ekweremadu (with over sixteen years as a legislator and Senate Deputy President) make laws and enforce them to bring order to our beloved and blessed country that our leaders and bad followers have turned into a failing state. Do not wait till this incident or any situation like the Senator Ekweremadu and his wife are under going before action is taken.
Primus Igboaka writes from Cleveland, Ohio.