Friday, July 19, 2024

Good Samaritans Dr. Ammar Al Jafari and Ebrima Jallow Join Forces to Save a Patient’s Life, But She Still Needs Your Help

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By: Seringe ST Touray

On Tuesday, January 2nd, 2024, The Fatu Network was contacted by Ebrima Jallow, an activist and General Manager at Al-Nuru Pharmacy in The Gambia. In our conversation, Ebrima shared a story about a young lady and patient at Ndemban Clinic in Bakau, The Gambia. This courageous individual was battling for her life, with no family or friends in the country to provide support. The lady in question had endured a harrowing motorcycle accident in the first week of December 2023, leading to significant bone fractures.

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Ebrima, during a visit to Ndemban Clinic to check on one of his patients, unexpectedly encountered the young woman named Favour. Witnessing the critical patient without any financial support, Ebrima sought information about her. The hospital staff confirmed that she was a Nigerian national involved in a motorcycle accident that tragically claimed two lives. Being admitted without any family, friends, or companions, Favour lacked the means to cover the expenses for her severe bone fractures treatment.

Realizing the urgency of Favour’s situation, Ebrima attempted to seek assistance from the Nigeria High Commission in The Gambia, later alleging that this approach proved unproductive.

He conveyed to The Fatu Network that Dr. Ammar Al Jafari, the Chief Medical Officer at Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital (EFSTH), stepped in to assist Favour. Dr. Ammar generously used his personal funds to acquire both medication and food, ensuring the sustenance of the patient’s health and well-being.

The Fatu Network reached out to Dr. Ammar Al Jafari to confirm his involvement in providing aid to Favour. Over the phone, Dr. Ammar said the following: “Every day, I go around in hospitals, including Ndemban, to check on patients and offer help when needed. When the patient has no escort, no money, I pay on their behalf, I perform tests, and buy medication. They (Ndemban) informed me about this Nigerian patient who was admitted without any escort or money, and I assured them that I would take care of her bills. Every day I buy a lot of medication and give her sufficient money to buy food. This has been my strategy to help both foreign and local patients in need.”

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Additionally, Dr. Ammar directed us to Salifu Jallow, the Operation Assistant Officer at Ndemban Clinic, who verified that Favour was, indeed, a victim of a motorcycle accident, where she emerged as the sole survivor among the three passengers on the bike. Salifu explained that Favour suffered fractures in her leg and arm. The hospital had previously reached out to Favour’s family in Nigeria, but financial constraints prevented them from providing assistance to Favour in her time of need.

At this juncture, The Fatu Network reached out to the Nigeria High Commission in The Gambia. They directed us to Great Akah Ottuduoma, the spokesperson for Nigerians in Diaspora (Gambia chapter) and the Coordinator of Nigerian Affairs, focusing on welfare and security matters. Great clarified that upon receiving news of the Nigerian national in the hospital, he and the President of the Nigerians in Diaspora community visited Ndemban Clinic to confirm Favour’s nationality. They discovered that Favour had been in an accident on the Brusubi-Bijilo highway, involving a collision between the motorcycle she was on and a car. The car’s driver, currently held at Brusubi Police Station, was identified.

During the visit to Brusubi Police Station, the Nigerian community learned that the same driver was taking full financial responsibility for Favour’s medical treatments as part of his arrest conditions. He had already initiated payments, negating the need for financial assistance from the Nigerians in Diaspora community. The Fatu Network verified this information through Brusubi Police Station. Despite the driver’s commitment, the diaspora community continued to monitor Favour’s situation closely.

Just last week, Ebrima reached out to the Nigeria High Commission and the Nigerians in Diaspora community, revealing that the financial support for Favour’s treatment had ceased from the man in custody at Brusubi Police Station. Favour was under significant stress due to this sudden halt. Ebrima, acting as a compassionate Samaritan, stepped in to contribute to Favour’s medical expenses, recognizing the urgency of her situation. However, he realized that he couldn’t manage it alone.

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At this critical juncture, Dr. Ammar Al Jafari, during one of his routine visits to hospitals and clinics, became aware of Favour’s predicament. Understanding that Favour lacked any immediate source of income to cover her treatment needs beyond Ebrima Jallow’s assistance, Dr. Ammar took the initiative to handle Favour’s bills, ensuring her continued access to necessary medical care.

When The Fatu Network spoke to Favour, her words were barely audible, strained by the pain she grappled with. Despite the challenge, she managed to convey the intensity of her suffering in her leg and arm: “I’ve had to remain still to avoid movement, as any movement causes more pain.”

Favour’s journey to recovery is undoubtedly a challenging one. Despite the kindness of Ebrima Jallow and Dr. Ammar Al Jafari, her path is still filled with obstacles. Imagine being a foreigner in a critical condition, grappling with severe bone fractures, and facing the world alone after leaving the clinic. No family, no friends, no support—just an uncertain road ahead.

From daunting medical bills to the commitment of long-term physiotherapy, Favour is in need of compassionate hearts beyond the benevolence of Dr. Ammar and Ebrima Jallow. The call goes out to the generous spirits of the Gambians and other residents who understand the significance of extending help without discrimination based on nationality or social orientation.

The Gambia, known as ‘the smiling coast,’ is renowned for its profound hospitality towards people from all walks of life. Now, Favour, a stranger in need, is calling upon that spirit of generosity. Let’s unite in support—donate what you can to contribute to Favour’s treatment and help her regain her strength. Together, we can be the embodiment of the compassionate spirit that makes ‘the smiling coast’ truly special.

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