21 Oct 2013

Press briefing by the Nigerian Centenary charity ball on bequeating legacy projects in the health sector


The debate on the propriety or otherwise of celebrating Nigerian Centenary Anniversary ought not to distract us from the opportunities the Centenary celebration presents. An opportunity to review our past, evaluate the present and hopefully shape the future in ways that address the past imperfections and make our lives better.

Bickering over everything should not be a natural vocation; we could even in dissent find solution to the myriad of problems we face as a people. As a people of faith, we do owe our Nation responsibilities far higher than personal interests including goodwill instead of the curses we rain on our nation, her institutions and leaders. Continue...

The Nigerian Centenary Charity Ball is designed to leverage on the centenary celebration and solve some of our problems. The Federal Government cannot solve all the problems faced by our beloved country but as citizens we can find a way around some of our collective problems this time.

Nigerian Centenary Charity Ball (NCCB) is a series of fund raising activities and event to address challenges primarily in tertiary healthcare for the good of us all and the country. It is estimated that Nigeria spends N250billion annually on foreign medical care. This capital flight is unsuitable for a developing country like ours. Sealing a hole in a child’s heart need not financially cripple the parents financially or take place in India, replacing a damaged kidney should and can be done within our borders. Every breast, cervical or prostate cancer patient should have access to quality care within Nigeria. Our neurosurgeons need to be gainfully employed. No woman should have her bladder torn giving birth. For victims of cruel acid attacks, constructive surgery can be done by experienced and skilled neurosurgeons.

Nigeria is blessed with skilled healthcare professionals who can perform excellent surgeries. What is required is the equipment, technology to carry out these surgeries and certainly this is what the NCCB hopes to achieve by equipping already existing National Referral Centers for heart, kidney diseases, neurosurgery, cancer care and management. This initiative intends to galvanize all Nigerians including Nigerians in the Diaspora for a common good, as our collective gift to Nigeria on her 100 years anniversary.

We will like to emphasize that in organizing the Nigerian Charity Ball, we have chosen to be politically blind because what is at stake is our health as a people. Kidney failure does not discriminate between PDP and APC; when cancer strikes, there is no distinction between APGA and PDP nor is there any distinction between the rich and the poor! This is why we have chosen to organize the NCCB around the Nigerian people, especially those of us who cannot access Medicare abroad because of its high cost.

The funds generated will be managed by an independent Trust for the purposes listed above. We cannot continue relying for help from the government alone. As individuals, corporate entities we should rise to this occasion and do something positive for our country and for ourselves.

 We want to use this opportunity to thank Otunba Subomi Balogun for donating a decent medical facility to UCH Ibadan, as well as Alhaji Aliko Dangote for the planned medical facility in Kano. However, we need not relent on our efforts but instead intensify them for the good of our people. At this point we would like to thank the SGF for his unflinching support to the NCCB. We are most grateful to Ms.

Ngozi Nwosu, a Nigerian citizen, popular Nollywood actress and most importantly a kidney disease survivor, who flew in from Lagos to lend her support to the noble campaign of NCCB to bequeath efficient and accessible healthcare to Nigerians. Her story creates a more compelling need for us citizens to rise up and say never again will we allow our hospitals and teaching hospitals refer treatable cases and surgeries abroad with all the implications on cost and affordability.

Dear compatriots, we cannot conclude this briefing without informing you that the unveiling of NCCB will take place within the next two weeks and the charity ball, which will be hosted by the President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan GCFR at EKO Convention Centre holds by December.

Gentlemen of the press, we implore you to be patient and listen to a detailed presentation on the NCCB.
God bless Nigeria!
 Dr. Kingsley Esegbue
 Secretary Organizing Committee,
 Nigerian Centenary Charity Ball (NCCB).

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