This story has no pictures of the subject himself. That might come later. Such pictures are not advisable immediately so that no flood of emotions and sentiments beclouds representing the substantive issue. Intervention is rather happy that the family will be reading this in the same manner that every other reader would also be reading it. In other words, nobody asked them for permission to write this and none was granted because the matter is no longer a family but a social challenge. The only tragedy is if the subject were to turn out not to be a biological son of the father. But even if that were to be the case, he is still a Nigerian and deserving of collective intervention.
The health ordeal of Mr. Olayinka Craig, one of the late Yinka Craig’s son might, strictly speaking, be the family’s headache. The contention driving this story holds the opposite view that it is beyond that particular family’s ordeal but something this society must want to intervene and help out those for whom life has been a messy, medical challenge.
That is not so much because his father, the late Yinka Craig, was a well known NTA newscaster and Sports commentator. That could be part of it but it is more for the fact that socializing unusual private ordeal is definitive of the good society, however we define or understand the word good.
Nobody in the family was asked about this young man’s history of the ordeal and the complication but he is right now at the National Hospital in Abuja. If the National Hospital, Abuja which must be the most perfect reflection of Nigeria as a rapidly unraveling society is still in a position to do anything about this young guy, then hospitals in Germany, Cuba and too many countries in the Western world can do 10 ten times more. Certainly, it cannot be that the medical world has concluded it cannot do anything about Mr. Olayinka Craig. It doesn’t matter at this point whether his father was able to mobilise resources and take him out of this country when he was alive. The challenge now is for him to have another opportunity to go out again.
Intervention has no idea what is afflicting him. He was sighted accidentally being taken to for what looks like a surgical process earlier this morning, (Saturday, 07/03/20). The late father – son resemblance was unmistakable but that came later. The immediate atmosphere around him was the trigger for this concern.
A quick count of persons with tormenting medical problems in Nigeria today may reveal a million more of such. Again, that is not the issue in contention. What is at stake is the ability of Nigeria to make a solidaristic statement of this particular case and thereby wave a banner of hope to those hidden millions being tormented by the misfortune of being a citizen of a country which tries to say that a society can do without healthcare.
Ideally, Yinka Craig’s son and his ordeal should have appeared in the social surveillance radar of a Local Government Chairman, a governor, a minister or several ministers, the many rich individuals that populate Nigeria or the federal machinery. That mechanism especially as it affects the religious arena might have been working, given what we see once a while in the newspapers. The puzzle is how it does not appear to have worked in the case of Yinka Craig’s son. Of course, it is possible some great, good Samaritans have been to his help. It is also possible that has not been the case. Whichever is the case, Nigeria can do it again.
The system might not have worked for the majority but Nigeria is not a nation of heartless people. Rather, Nigeria is a society run on the wheels of affection and reciprocity, not in the negative, World Bank sense of it but in the most noble spirit that is definitive of mankind long before the diffusion and interdependence that globalisation now speaks to.
Nigeria is too diverse for emotions to work. Still, it is assumed that many would not sleep again until they see that something is done for this guy and quickly too. By Nigeria here is meant every layer of government in this country – from the local to the federal; individuals who are independently rich enough to give back to society; the charities; the ambassadors and High Commissioners of countries that can do something in terms of medical innovation and what have you!
Time is of essence, Nigeria!