Mohammed Atiku Abubakar
I, Mohammed Atiku Abubakar, wish to inform Nigerians that I have finally been cleared and discharged after 40 days of coronavirus (Covid19) treatment.
My discharge could not have come at a better time than in the Ramadan, a season marked by sacrifice and supplication to the Almighty Allah.
I thank the Almighty Allah for my recovery from the dreaded infection and also wish to express my sincerest and deepest appreciation to Nigerians for their prayers and goodwill while I was being treated.
In the course of life, we have no idea of what will happen to us because only the Almighty God knows our future. When the coronavirus first broke out in far away China, I had no idea that I might be one of those to be infected. This is one of the everlasting lessons I can’t forget for the rest of my life. Indeed, I have been humbled by this experience. Words cannot sufficiently convey the depth of my joy over my recovery and discharge.
Since I tested positive after my return from abroad and my isolation for treatment, I was inundated with incredible expressions of goodwill by Nigerians. This pandemic has united the rich and the poor and, indeed, the rest of the world against this novel lethal virus that has caused economic and social disruptions globally.
No matter our problems, however, we shouldn’t lose hope in our own country.
Despite the limitations of our health system, the Federal Ministry of Health and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control have done tremendously well.
Our doctors, nurses and other front line health workers also deserve accolades for their sacrifices and professionalism during this challenging period of our country.
Every epidemic or pandemic comes with its lessons. The coronavirus has caught the world off guard and sent us reeling for solutions. It also reveals the weaknesses of our health systems in the developing world. It’s an eye opening experience for Nigeria and other developing nations.
Thanks to coronavirus outbreak, we are now coming to terms with the necessity of adequate funding of our healthcare system.
This disease has brought the rich, the poor and the powerful to a common level. This is the time our policy makers should reset our national priorities and give our health system adequate attention. No investment in our health sector is too much.
In October 2016, the then Nigeria’s Minister of State for Health (currently the Minister of Health), Dr. Osagie Ehanire was quoted by The Guardian Newspaper as saying that Nigeria was spending a whopping $1 billion dollars annually on medical tourism abroad.
This revelation is a reminder of the urgent need to mobilise resources towards upgrading our health system at home in order to render medical tourism almost unnecessary. It’s time to restore confidence in our own health system and that can only be achieved by adequate investment and funding.
No less important, our policy makers should also adequately fund research in vaccines and other drugs because of the uncertainties and challenges like the coronavirus.
Once again, thank you for your support and prayers, may Allah show up for you at your appointed time of need. May the Almighty Allah be with all those still in the Isolation Centre and grant them healing.
Mohammed Atiku Abubakar.
28th April 2020.