Ailing Nigerian lecturer, Inih Ebong, has checked into a hospital in Uyo for medical treatment, courtesy of help from a Nigerian billionaire, Femi Otedola.
Ebong’s wife, Uduak, confirmed that Femi Otedola Foundation has paid money to the hospital, Prime Clinic, Uyo, for the treatment of the lecturer who has been diagnosed with cardiac failure.
“We have been to the hospital, he has started receiving treatment,” Ebong said, while thanking Mr Otedola, his foundation, and Nigerians for the love and support they have shown to her husband.
On October 5, Premium Times reported that Ebong was ill and in need of urgent medical help, a report that caught the attention of the billionaire businessman.
Otedola read the story and was moved by the lecturer’s plight, Philip Akinola, a representative of Femi Otedola Foundation, said.
Ebong, 71, has been out of job for so long. Without any alternative source of income, he did not have the money to pay for medical bills or even feed himself and his family.
He was an associate professor in the Department of Theatre Arts, University of Uyo, when his appointment was unlawfully terminated in 2002. Akpan Ekpo and Peter Effiong were the vice-chancellor and registrar of the institution respectively at the time.
Three successive vice-chancellors of the university have refused to reinstate him, despite a string of victories at different courts.
Ebong, before his sack, had a running battle with Messrs Ekpo and Effiong, who saw him as a thorn for speaking up regularly against alleged maladministration and corruption in the school.
Ebong’s physician, Ime Essien, in a medical report issued on October 8, said the lecturer was brought to the hospital, Prime Clinic, Uyo, in November 2019 because of “recurrent leg swelling and shortness of breath of about 9 years duration.
“He had earlier been managed at the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital for congestive cardiac failure secondary to rheumatic cardiomyopathy,” the doctor said.
Essien, a consultant cardiologist, said a medical examination he did on Mr Ebong revealed he had “fluid retention, including scrotal oedema.
“He was managed conservatively and discharged after spending one month in hospital. Since then, he has been in and out of hospital as his health continues to deteriorate,” the doctor said.
Ebong has been receiving goodwill and financial support from Nigerians nationwide since the story of his illness was reported.