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How I was forced into 41-day dry fasting — Troubled SS1 student

By Uchenna Inya, Abakaliki on 22/09/2019

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•Troubled student Ikechukwu Oke
•Troubled student Ikechukwu Oke

Recuperating SS1 student of Ishieke Secondary School, Ebonyi Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, Ikechukwu Oke, has revealed why he embarked on a 41-day dry fasting which landed him in the hospital after concluding it.

Ikechukwu Oke, who hails from Ohataekwe in Umuezeokaoha community, Ezza North Local Government Area of the state had collapsed after the marathon praying and fasting on a mountain in Azugwu, Abakaliki metropolis.

Oke, who commenced the fasting on July 23, sneaked to the mountain without informing his widowed mother, Elizabeth and his elder brother, Obinna Oke who lives with him in Ishieke.

Some of his prayer colleagues hurriedly carried him to the elder brother who consulted a patent medicine dealer who administered drip and some drugs on him to revive him following his sudden collapse.

A former House of Rep member in the state, Peter Edeh, who is an old boy of Ishieke Secondary School and who was not satisfied with the local treatment, instructed Nteoma Chimaobi to take him to the Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital Abakaliki (AE-FUTHA) for proper medical examination and immediate treatment.

Edeh also donated N40,000 for Oke’s treatment.

The 19-year-old boy stayed in the hospital for more than a week. He reportedly died on September 9 while in hospital. He had gone into coma and was placed on oxygen life support before he reportedly passed away.

His mother, who was taking care of him at the hospital, started making arrangements on how his body will be taking out of the hospital for burial.

But Ikechukwu reportedly came back to life after about an hour.

Few days later, he opted to be discharged from the hospital.

The boy had severally complained of hardship in his family and sort assistance from government and private individuals but to no avail.

He hawks sachet water otherwise known as pure water and gala in Onitsha Anambra after every academic term in the school calendar, to raise his school fees and decided to embark on 41-days praying and fasting to seek God’s intervention.

Ikechukwu spoke to Sunday Telegraph from his Ohataekwe village. His two legs are very swollen and he still looked malnourished.

He said: “I am fine, I have no health issues. I embarked on 41 days dry fasting for the welfare of Ebonyi my dear state, the country Nigeria, all over the world and above all my family that has been passing through difficulties.

“There are afflictions everywhere and it is only God that can deliver us. Life has not been easy for us and I believed it was high time to seek God’s intervention.

“I also embarked on the dry fasting to serve him, I want to be a

Catholic priest and need God’s help to achieve this goal. I have burning desire to serve God; he has called me to serve him. This dry fasting has revealed to me that God is the ultimate God and it has also shown me that I will later serve him.

“Since I finished the dry fasting, I have not been eating solid foods. I only eat fruits, drink tea. I am having pains inside my stomach but I know it is just for a while, it cannot last. Another problem I have is these my swollen legs.”

His aged widowed mother, Elizabeth Oke told our Correspondent that the boy has passed through very tough times in life as things continue to be very difficult for the family since the demise of her husband in 1996.

She disclosed that four of her daughters have dropped out of school as a result of lack of money to carter for them in their studies which according to her was one of the reasons Ikechukwu embarked on the fasting.

She said: “When we were in the hospital, some persons visited us to know how Ikechukwu was doing. Ikechukwu himself was the one that compelled us to return home and leave the hospital. He said he was not feeling comfortable in the hospital and opted to be discharged. While in the hospital, he was always complaining of attack and insisted we must leave.

“On September 9, he went into coma and he was on oxygen, sadly he later died. Doctors and nurses did all they could to revive him. I had to contact his elder brother and other siblings including my first daughter and we started making arrangements to bring his corpse home for burial.

“I was gathered his clothes I washed and spread on ropes, preparing for his body to be taken home when his elder brother, Obinna, who rushed to the hospital after receiving my call that Ikechukwu is dead, came to me and told me Ikechukwu had started moving his body and I told him to stop deceiving me that the oxygen they put on his nose is just for formality sake, that he is dead and we have to take the corpse out of the hospital before they deposit it in the morgue and it becomes another expense for us which we will not be able to carry.“I gathered all his clothes and came back to the ward and saw

Ikechukwu already seated on the bed and he told me we should go home immediately. We told him to remain in the hospital for proper medical treatment but he refused. His siblings had no option than to push for his discharge after some medical tests were conducted on him by the hospital management.

“We finally left the hospital last Friday, September 13 and returned home. There is tremendous improvement; he speaks what one can hear, baths, and eats by himself although he has not started eating heavy foods like fufu and others. He only drinks tea, palp, vegetables and fruits. He sleeps well at home and he studies his Bible, prays very well. He was not doing all these things when we were in the hospital and that is why is said there is great improvement.

“Ikechukwu is an ardent Catholic; he is very committed in the church. He started very early that he wants to be a Reverend Father but that his father who would have helped him actualize the dream is no more alive. I put him in primary school in the village and he graduated successfully. After concluding the primary school, he said he wants to go to seminary school so as to become Catholic Priest but Obinna, his brother, told him no that he must attend secondary school and then enter Seminary school and that it is the procedure.

“Since their father died in 1996, I have been suffering to train them. I mix concrete in construction sites and I do other menial hard jobs to carter for them. Life has continued to be very difficult for me and my children.”

On his part, Obinna Oke his elder brother said Ikechukwu will return to school when he recovers fully.

He corroborated his mother that the boy was the one that insisted that he should be discharged from hospital to enable him relax, pray and study his Bible.

“I will bring Ikechukwu out of the village back to my base in Ishieke after recovering very well to enable him continue his education. He cannot drop out school because of this problem. I decided to relocate to the village and go to work on daily basis from the village because of Ikechukwu’s condition.

“I want to monitor him and he is doing well in the village than when he was in the hospital. While in the hospital, he said we should go home that his problem is not something that can be handled medically, that it is a spiritual matters. He said he should be discharged so that he will have enough time to pray and study his Bible,” said Obinna.

Nteoma Chimaobi, who was the one that assisted in taking Ikechukwu to hospital, described Ikechukwu as a strong Christian who preaches the word of God with zeal.

He revealed that N15,000 medical test was conducted on the boy to ascertain his health condition after the fasting and that only N200 drugs were prescribed for him by doctors.

Speaking further Chimaobi said: “The government has not done anything so far. The Local Government Area Chairman, Mrs Nora Allu is yet to do anything, for the family.” (Sunday Telegraph)

Source News Express

Posted 22/09/2019 12:04:55 PM





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