• Needs N10m for heart surgery
A former national team goalkeeper, Paul Obiakor, who is battling with a heart problem that requires about N10 million to treat, has begged Nigerians to come to his aid. The doctors treating Obiakor say he needs a CRTB, an implant apparatus that aids the heart to function, as well as money for other medical expenses.
Already, doctors at Heartland Medical Centre, Asokoro, Abuja, are threatening to discharge him for failure to pay the N5 million deposit needed to continue his treatment.
Obiakor, who played for Enugu Rangers, in a telephone interview from his hospital bed at Heartland Cardiological Centre, Asokoro, Abuja, is begging Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, the Chairman of Anambra State Football Association, Senator Ifeanyi Ubah and Chairman of the State Sports Development Commission, Tony Oli and other public-spirited individuals to help him raise the N10 million demanded by doctors.
“I have a heart problem. I had spent almost N1.8 million of my savings to manage the ailment.
“I went to St. Joseph’s Hospital, Adazi Nnukwu, Anaocha Council of Anambra State to see a consultant, Dr. Nwilo, but he was not around. I underwent tests, but there was nobody to treat me.
“I went to Okoye Specialist Hospital, Awka where I spent a week and from there the doctor referred me to Heartland Cardiological Centre, Asokoro Abuja where I am now.
“After undergoing several tests, I was told that I had heart enlargement, which nobody had ever told me. What the heart enlargement means is that my heart does not beat well as a result of the weak heart.
“The solution now is to procure CRTB which costs about N10 million. I cannot buy it, in addition to meeting up with other medical expenses,” he said.
Obiakor, who was in goal for Christ the Kings College, Onitsha when they won the World Schools Cup in 1977, queried: “From where do I get that kind of money? Where we served in the Sports Council and Ministry, we didn’t loot… we devoted our time to discover, nurture and expose talents to limelight for self-reliance and nation-building.”
A letter by his son, Paul-Chiemelie Obiakor to Governor Obiano, which was copied to Senator Ubah and Oli, explained the former goalkeeper’s health history, while pleading for financial assistance from human-spirited Nigerians.