- NMA mourns
Activities in some were completely paralysed due to the death of six medical doctors involved in a ghastly motor accident along Kaduna Road on Sunday.
The six doctors who lost their lives were Dr Tunde Aladesanmi of FETHI, Dr Ojo Taiwo (EKSUTH), NMA secretary, Dr Akinyele Alex; Dr J. Ogunseye of the Health Management Board, president, EKSUTH Association of Resident Doctors, ARD, Dr Olajide, Dr Adeniyi James of FETHI and a driver, Mr. Ajibola.
The death of the doctors, according to eyewitness, has forced the doctors, nurses and other staff of Federal Teaching Hospital in Ido-Ekiti to troop out as early as 7am, locked the main gate of the hospital in protest , which caused serious confusion to patients and visitors to the hospital.
The protesters in expressed grief over the death of three doctors in FETHI out of those that lost their lives, saying they suspected that their death was diabolical and beyond human imagination.
The doctors, led by the chairman of the Nigerian Medical Association in Ekiti State, Dr. John Akinbote who survived the accident, died while on their way to Sokoto State to attend the NMA’s Annual General Meeting.
Speaking on the incident, FETHI’s Chief Medical Director, Dr Lawrence Ayodele described the death of the doctors as a national disaster, saying “it is not about the state but the whole country, because it involves six senior doctors and a driver.
“On behalf of the entire hospital community, we pray that this kind of very sad event would not happen again. We need a period of prayer to put an end to this kind of ugly incident.”
On the staff unrest that followed the death of the doctors, Ayodele said: “I got the information this morning, yesterday, but let me say that it is normal that when there is a grief, people can bring up any kind of behaviour. But we should not allow emotion to override our thinking and grief should not push us to doing what we are not supposed to do. I plead with them to be peaceful.”
The CMD said the families of the deceased had been contacted by both the state government and the NMA over the ugly incident.
In his reaction, the EKSUTH CMD, Dr Kolawole Ogundipe said the management had sent five ambulances to Kaduna to evacuate the corpses of the deceased.
Ogundipe, who appealed to members to be peaceful, prayed God to grant the NMA, the bereaved families and Ekiti government the fortitude to bear the loss.
Meanwhile, Governor Ayodele Fayose has described the deaths of the doctors and one driver as a monumental loss not only to the people of Ekiti State but to Nigerians, declaring a three-day mourning, from Monday to Wednesday.
The governor, who directed that all flags should be flown at half-mast, described the death as an eclipse of professional and intellectual figures who lost their lives in active service to mankind, saying “Ekiti has lost some of the best trees in its forest of medicine. I am deeply sad; this is one loss too many.”
A statement by his special assistant on Public Communications, Lere Olayinka, Fayose said: “Death of seven prominent indigenes of a state in one day and at the same period is a burden too heavy to bear; and it is my prayer that God, who is the only giver and taker of life, will give Ekiti people the fortitude to bear this irreparable loss.
“On behalf of my family, government and people of Ekiti State, I express our heartfelt condolence for the loss of these promising sons of Ekiti and wish their families, friends and professional colleagues the continued support and guidance of the Almighty God,” the governor said.
Meanwhile, NMA is mourning the death of its members who died in that accident.
In a statement, the association stated that other members of the delegates who survived the accident were in stable condition and were receiving medical attention under the auspices of the chairman of the Kaduna State NMA and his team.
While the conference continues, the national organising committee has directed that all doctors should observe one week of mourning from Tuesday, May 26 to Tuesday, 3.
Within this period, all doctors are directed to wear black bands on their left hand as a mark of respect for the departed doctors.
Also, the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole has commiserated with the president and entire membership of the NMA over the loss of their members.
A statement by the director of Media and Public Relations of the ministry, Boade Akinola, said the minister prayed for the quick recovery of the survivors.
It read, “Our prayers that Almighty God in His infinite mercy will give the family, friends and the entire members of NMA the fortitude to bear this irreparable loss. To the survivors, our prayers is that they will recover soon and get integrated into their normal daily activities.
“The Federal Ministry of Health is in constant touch with the leadership of the NMA so that the survivors of the accident could get the best healthcare service.
“I am using this medium to thank the leadership of the NMA especially those at the scene of accident in Kaduna who were involved in the evacuation of both the survivors and the deceased.”