When act of kindness

When act of kindness backfires

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The intervention of two good Samaritans took an unexpected turn when they were arrested upon rushing an unconscious woman to the hospital for emergency care.

The sisters, Nkiruka and Onyekachi, had taken a woman whom they found unconscious at the gate of their house to Karu General Hospital, Abuja, where the bizarre turn of events took place; their swift action, which was aimed at saving a life, was met with an unexpected consequence.

According to both sisters’ posts on X, they had found the woman at the gate of their house after a cleaner alerted them. They took the woman to the hospital and after so much hassle between the sisters and the nurses about taking the woman into the hospital, they were prevented from leaving the hospital even after the woman’s relatives had arrived.

Onyekachi, with the handle @Qachosky posted that “I was at Karu General Hospital. I was called by the cleaner that someone fainted. I came to see her. As a healthcare worker with a responsibility, I took her to the hospital. On getting to the hospital, they said I should open a folder for her.

“I told her that I didn’t know the patient. So, I couldn’t give her details. My sister got her husband’s number and he said we should please take her to the hospital. Upon getting there, they refused to get a stretcher to move her.

“After a lot of back and forth, they took her in. And asked us to go get a card. We told them that we didn’t have her details as we didn’t know her. We told them that her family had been called and they should wait for them to get here.

“These people started shouting at us about getting the card. I got angry and we decided to leave while my brother stayed back. They blocked the hospital gate and held us hostage that we wouldn’t leave, because we were already at the front. Others couldn’t come in.

“The CMD came and called the police on us. And charged us to court. She equally lied to the Police that we were the ones that attacked the girl. Now, they’re charging us to court for domestic violence. I’m currently in detention as I write this.

“As a health worker, I’m disappointed and gutted that the CMD, Dr Ede Ojo, is trumping up charges and trying to intimidate us for helping a citizen during a health emergency. I can’t believe this.

“She has called senior colleagues and lied to them. She has told so many untrue stories. The lady who fainted is in court and has been screaming that we saved her life, but they’re lying. I can’t believe this is what’s going on.

“We’re being treated like criminals all for helping someone. I’ve heard of these things happening. I never believed that it’d be me. Nigeria finally happened to me.”

Sunday Tribune reached out to Nkiruka Nwitte-Eze, who confirmed the incident and added that their bail was secured by their lawyer and the case is still in court.

Against this backdrop, Sunday Tribune spoke with Nigerians to find out if they would help out a stranger who needs emergency care.

 

Glory Josephat, accountant

In a sane country, the answer would be yes without a doubt but in Nigeria where a person can quickly be jailed for being a decent human, I am not sure I would assist someone in need of emergency care. I will try to contact the police instead.

 

Olaniyan Tosin, graphics designer

Depending on the emergency case, I will help the person to the hospital. My sister has been in such a situation before and someone helped her to the hospital, so, yes, I will.

 

Ibukun Ashaolu-Alabi

I would love to. However, the way our system is configured in this country will not make me want to help. Hospitals will expect you to provide the person’s information before they can treat him or her. If the person now dies due to negligence, you might be accused wrongly and therefore pay for a sin you didn’t commit. I would rather raise an alarm to alert people in the vicinity so we can all help in our way together rather than help the person alone.

 

Seun Aribikola, journalist

Life is very important to me and in the case of an emergency, that means the person involved is in a critical condition which might lead to death if there is no prompt action. One of the cases I have attended to was that of an incident where a teenager (female) was found alive in a scary dungeon. Every other reporter, security agency and all, did not care about saving the girl’s life.

As a journalist, I could have gotten to the site, reported the incident and taken my leave too but I took it upon myself to give ‘emergency care’ to the girl by taking her to the nearest hospital for first aid and later to University College Hospital for proper care. I left the hospital at around 11 pm that day

In line with doing that, I called on people around for support and we were able to reach that girl’s mother the same day. The mother came around and I took them to the hospital. The girl was raped in the dungeon for several hours before she was found.

I felt I could not withstand the pain if this girl died without anyone helping her. She was bleeding profusely that the first hospital could not stop the bleeding. I spent my money on them that night and our office also supported me with money when I reached out.

So I will always give emergency care to strangers if it will not be inimical to me. Life is important to me and I will do all in my capacity to save anyone’s life irrespective of religion, ethnicity or culture.

 

Christiana Badejo

Regardless of the fear that security forces have implanted in the hearts of men that made many grow cold towards a fellow human in an emergency state, I will assist a stranger in need of emergency care.

 

Charles Abaka

Yes, depending on the situation. Some emergency cases might not look the way it seems. In our society now, one needs to be careful of lending a hand because it can backfire. If a pregnant woman is in labour then that sort of emergency is a situation in which I will help, not denying the fact that it can be faked to rob a person. Another instance is that of an emergency case of someone beside the road purportedly hit by a taxi can turn out to be a ploy to rob people.

 

Kirmadei Oladimeji, Web Developer.

I would definitely help strangers who need it. I remember one time in Ife although the girl eventually died. No bus driver wanted to help because they feared they may be arrested, but a student was brave enough to carry her with a motorcycle to the hospital and he showed them his ID card. Even though it could have negative consequences like arrests and all that, I will help the person and be satisfied to have at least saved or tried to save someone’s life.

 

Tryphena Eniayewu, student

In this country? It is right to help but this country has only made things harder than they should be. The funny thing is I think if someone collapses right beside me, my initial instinct would be to run out of fear, but when I see that there’s no cause for alarm, my instinct will still force me to want to know what’s going on with the person and help. Common sense will now be the one to remind me which country I’m in.

 

Jesuloluwa Ayanniyi, corps member

I don’t know. I might help the person and pray that God rescues me or call an ambulance instead of helping directly, that is safer. Call an ambulance and run away.

 

Wilson Tochukwu

No law protects providers of aid in Nigeria and that has made it difficult to save lives. Only Nigerian Police will make you regret helping someone if something goes wrong along the line.

 

Adenike Shannon, nurse

I would not help a stranger who needs emergency care. In this country, if anything happens to the person in the hospital, I will be held responsible for it. So, no!

 

Tijesuni Israel, student

Yes, I would help a person in need of emergency care. It’s about life, so I will not hesitate to help in any way I can irrespective of the consequences.

 

Christiana Badejo

Seeing the maliciousness and wickedness spiced with deceitfulness and uttermost greed in the hearts of men right now, I will need spiritual discernment to know if I should help and I will only ask the holy spirit three times. Once there’s no response, it’s gone. I will only pray as I walk past with my dark eyeglasses on for the person’s recovery because the good Samaritan in Nigeria ends up becoming prey in the hands of security agencies. Truly, the heart of man is deceitful and desperately wicked, who can know it.

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