The birth of a child brings not only joy
to the immediate family but also peace in the community. For instance,
in some parts of Nigeria like Igbo land, the birth of a child brings
unity and settles quarrels among friends, enemies and neighbours.
But when this most sought after gift comes with a price, neither the
mother of the child nor the father, relations and friends can sleep with
their two eyes closed. Worse still, the condition is complicated when
the couple is faced with the challenge of resources to tackle the
This is exactly the situation Mr & Mrs Godwin Aboh are facing.
Their 15-month old baby, Destiny, is down with two large holes in the
heart, a condition experts at the Lagos State University Teaching
Hospital (LASUTH), say if nothing is done pretty fast, the baby may not
live to celebrate his second birthday. And Destiny’s case is a bit
complicated than what could be taken care of here in Nigeria. He needs
N2 million for a life-saving surgery in India. Unfortunately his
parents cannot afford it.
The couple already had a travelling passport obtained for Destiny for
possible medical trip in India last Monday when they visisted the
Vanguard Corporate Head Office, Apapa, Lagos. Sadly, securing a
passport was far from the issue at stake. Where is the money? This is
the one million dollar question this young couple has long been
searching for an answer to four days after the birth of Destiny at
Zoligan Hospital, Ajegunle, Lagos.
A year and three months after, nothing substantial has been done to
reduce Destiny’s suffering. Having to take care of the baby is
difficult as he cries all day. Some times he loses consciousness. It
is so bad that you even think he was dead.
At 15 months (a year and three months), Destiny cannot sit or play like
every other child. His breathing is abnormal. He only feeds on milk.
He consumes at least three tins of milk in two days.
Destiny is said to have been born with a congenital heart disease.
According to an echocardiogram report from LASUTH, signed by Dr. B. A
Animasahun, a consultant paediatric cardiologist, the baby has large
perimembranous vascular disease, VSD, with posterior upper muscular
extension, moderate sized PDAL- R and severe PAH. By this result,
Destiny requires urgent medical attention.
He cannot feed like every other child; even as essential as breast
milk is to babies, he has never had a taste of it due to ill health. He
only feeds on milk. His father, a contract security officer with
Cardinal Security, can no longer cope with the baby’s exorbitant
hospital and feeding bills. .
The mother, Anna, who confessed to have fainted when the result of
the echo test was broken to her, said: “I lost consciousness immediately
the news was broken to me because I know the kind of work my husband
does and definitely that cannot afford the hospital bill not to talk of
“The meagre salary of my husband before now was not able to sustain
us and our two other children. Our survival till this moment remains a
miracle. Since the diagnosis, we have been running from pillar to post
to raise money; all we get is promises, but, according to the doctors at
LASUTH, we have little time.
“We have been to Kanu Heart Foundation where we were told that the
list of awaiting patients is long and that if we want to wait, it may
take two to three years before it will get to our turn. It was then we
knew there was no hope. We have also been to many other Foundations but
help seems not to be coming our way. Then, we decided to come to
Vanguard to appeal to Nigerians to help us save the life of our son.”
The husband, Godwin, continued from there. According to him, it all
began like a child’s play. He told Sunday Vanguard that Destiny’s
condition started the day after they were discharged after his birth.
Destiny’s health condition started like fever.
According to medical science, some babies are born with such
congenital defects. The Aboh family was able to recognise the medical
implications even though they do not have the resources to take care of
Appealing to Nigerians, corporate organisations, philanthropists and
the governor of his home state of Benue, Gabriel Suswam, to come to
their aid, Godwin said: “It has been a tough situation for us. Only the
feeding and drugs that are changed every two weeks have consumed all my
life savings. I appeal to Nigerians, corporate organisations and Lagos
State Governor Babatunde Fashola to please save my child. I want my
baby to live but how do I do it if I don’t get help? Doctors are saying
that we are running out of time.”
If you are touched by the story of Destiny, please contact Mr & Mrs Godwin Aboh on 08051517256 or 08057033128