• Trapped by electric boiling ring, waits in vain for relief
relief is yet to come the way of a 20-month-old Abbas Adamu who was trapped and disfigured by electric boiling heater during a hot fight between his mother, Jamila Adamu and a tailor in Potiskum, Yobe State.
Relief is yet to come the way of a 20-month-old Abbas Adamu who was trapped and disfigured by electric boiling heater during a hot fight between his mother, Jamila, and a tailor in Potiskum, Yobe State. Abbas lost his limb in the struggle in a tailoring shop on December 17, 2016, and was brought to Jos to get free artificial limbs.
The unlucky child and his mother were disappointed when it was their turn to take measurement of the amputated limb to be replaced with the artificial one, when national president of Centre for Advocacy and Persons with Disabilities, Omotunde Ellen Thompson, broke them the news that Adamu cannot be issued artificial limbs now until he is five.
His distraught mother became demoralised and dejected, seeking who would persuade the doctors to yield to their demand of ensuring the boy bounce back on his feet. She was told the artificial limbs would not be effective on him until he attains the requisite age of five.
Abbaswas born in August 2015 and had the opportunity of walking with his limbs for six months after scrawling, but was deformed and permanently subjected to scrawling for the rest of his life except where he uses artificial limb.
His 26-year-old mother recalled the implication of her action and regrettably admitted that if she had exercised self-control, she wouldn’t have found herself in the turbulent condition. Though, she claimed she was assaulted by the tailor with the baby boy on her back who took a wooden chair after exchanging unpleasant words hit her and both of them fell on electric boiling heater in the tailoring shop.
According to her, both of them were trapped by the electricity current, and immediately went blank for several minutes before the confused tailor screamed for help to rescue them from the cold hands of death. Before any intervention, Abbas had sustained a first degree burns on his knee which led to the amputation of his right limb at the Specialist Hospital Potiskum, after application of traditional medicine. The mother suffered minor burns on her hand and stomach.
“My husband was not at home during the episode, he has not been stable because of the kind of job he does. He drives trailers from the North to the South and sometime he will take two months before he comes home.
“He was furious over the whole thing and threatens to take the matter to court. At the same time, he was blaming me for engaging a man into a fight over pieces of wrappers. I was angry with the tailor because my cloths have been with him for seven months after paying him but later claimed that the cloths were lost. I couldn’t hold myself when he was beating me and I didn’t notice that a boiling heater was fixed beside me.
“We got information that Plateau State Government is giving free artificial limbs in collaboration with Centre for Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities and Tolaram Charity Foundation. We came to Jos and we are returning home disappointed because we could not get the limbs, that until he is five years old.”
Interestingly, Abbas was the youngest among 150 amputees who came from Potiskum to Jos in search for artificial limbs. The victims were made up of middle age men, aged men and women. They came in three 32-seater buses with registration number, Yobe LG 16 PKM; Yobe GDM 151 XA and Yobe PKM 171 GM with boldly written inscription, Potiskum Government Mass Transit, Yobe State, with additional 18-seater bus with registration number, Yobe DTR 08 LG.
The amputees, who were begging for alms in the streets of Potiskum arrived Plateau State Disability Right Commission, Jos, at about 3pm after a seven-hour hectic journey. Those without limbs were seen scrawling on the ground while others were on arms and elbows crouches hoping to be given free artificial limbs.
Chairman of Yobe State Persons living with Disabilities, Umar Sanda, who lost his limb to a motor accident, narrated the pains and agony of his members who scrawled not because they were born that way but due to natural phenomenon:
“It is very painful when you have become an adult only for you to start scrawling again because you have lost your legs. This is exactly the pain of my members. Some of them are drivers who lost their limbs in motor accidents.
“When we got information that Centre for Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities in collaboration with Tolaram Charity Foundation and Plateau State Government is giving free artificial limbs, I quickly mobilised my members and 150 persons attended the exercise. Our measurements were taken and the wounds address in preparation for issuing the artificial limbs in May 12, 2017.
“We appreciate Plateau State Government for the initiative to ease the movement of persons with disabilities; this is not to say Yobe State government are not taking care of us, they are giving us allowance at the end of every month.”
Each victim shouldered the responsibility of his feeding and accommodation as most of them passed the night at the premises of Plateau State Disability Right Commission.
Thompson said the initiative for free artificial limbs became necessary due to increasing number of persons with disabilities in the country as a result of human error.
The 54-year-old woman whose lower limbs paralysed as a result of injection at the age of five, said 400 amputees from Wase, Shendam, Riyom, Barkin-Ladi and Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau State turned up for the exercise and about 150 persons from Potiskum, Yobe State were also registered to be given artificial limbs on the 12 May, 2017.