Brigadier-General Otu Oviemo Ovadje (rtd), a former Medical Director of the Military Hospital, Lagos has finally given insights into the demise of former head of state, General Sani Abacha and former President, Umaru Musa Yar’Adua.
The medical practitioner gave the shocking revelations on Sunday:
He also spoke on how an ex Minister in the former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s cabinet and a former Kwara State governor passed away due to lack of necessary medical facilities in Nigeria.
Oviemo spoke at the symposium organised by Mcnext Intellectual Property in collaboration with the Student Union Government of Yaba College of Technology, Lagos on the topic Where are we in the Global Plan?
According to him, “The late Gen Abacha while in office could not undertake medical tourism but imported Filipino doctors to manage his condition. The Filipino’s made a mockery of his management by pumping steroids into him.
“The President became bloated and was thought by the un-informed as improving and gaining weight. The President’s weight gain and puffiness was largely due to fluid retention. I was privileged as a celebrated Nigerian doctor at the time to advise but there were too many uninterested aides of the Head of State. It became too late in the day. He snapped and died,” he disclosed.
Oviemo lamented that it was unfortunate that the late Yar’Adua until his demise could not build a specialised centre to cater for his ailment, though there are more and better trained doctoors who could have handled his case better.
He further claimed that the late President Yar’Adua died as a result of brain damage caused by severe asphyxia to ignorance and poor management.
His words, “The presence of a sophisticated Air and Land Ambulance did not prevent him from dying from his condition just as the hospital in Saudi Arabia with all its gadgets could not reverse damage done to his brain during an acute deterioration of his health.
“Imagine what could have happened to our very meek, humble and generally loved president when he suffered an acute relapse of his condition. He was rushed into the ambulance and a face mask was turned on with oxygen flushing over his face.”
Speaking further, the respected doctor noted that the late Head of State was “hypo-ventilating at the time and by the time he got to Saudi Arabia, he had suffered irreversible brain death.”
“Because Nigerians believe in the god of mammon and that money answers all things, they expected a miracle from the Saudi hospital. The truth is that if we had good centres back home in Nigeria, the late Head of State should have been stabilised before been flown out. Our usual first impulse is to fly out the sick and our experiences have shown that many patients die,” he said.
He also recalled how a former Military Governor of Kwara State who had pneumonia was flown abroad without his own knowledge and the said former governor was unlucky.
According to him, “I met the big man sweaty, restless and confused due to carbon dioxide narcosis from his poor ventilation. I only adjusted his neck and positioned his head to enable him exhale properly and his condition improved.
“I advised them not to fly him out immediately to allow him to be stable. I volunteered to fly with him at my own expense to support him on board. By the time I returned back from Lagos where I went for my passport, the man had been flown out. Early in the morning, I got a call from one of my highly placed mentors that “we lost him”.
“I was told that he got to Germany but he died before he could gain admission to a hospital. The General’s condition could have been very well-managed in Nigeria but for the pleasure of medical tourism and the absence of identifiable/recognisable facilities and expertise. Money has robbed many privileged and affluent Nigerians of sensibility. They never see with you or take advice when money talks,” Oviemo recalled.
Continuing, Oviemo hinted that during the second term of former President Olusegun Obasanjo in office, a former Minister died as a result of asthmatic attacks, which could have been easily cured if necessary medical facilities were available in the country.
He stated that South Africans, including their top government officials, don’t undertake medical tourism like Nigerian leaders and that is why their standard of living is far better than what we have in Nigeria.