Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja
Sonia Ekweremadu, the daughter of former Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu, appealed to the public yesterday to help donate a kidney to replace her damaged one.
Sonia, whose parents were arrested in the United Kingdom while trying to find her a donor, revealed on her Instagram page that she had a rare kidney disease.
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The Nigerian lawmaker and his wife, Beatrice, are charged with conspiracy to arrange/facilitate the travel of another person for the purpose of exploitation, specifically organ harvesting.
On June 23, Ekweremadu and Beatrice were arrested and remanded in a UK prison on suspicion of plotting to harvest the organs of one David Nwamini for use by their ailing daughter, Sonia.
But Ekweremadu said the boy was undergoing medical investigations for a kidney donation to Sonia, his daughter, who was in need of a kidney transplant.
The Instagram statement said, “I, Sonia Ekweremadu, hereby appeal to the general public to come to my aid and save my life.
“I am 25 years old and a graduate of Media and Communications, University of Coventry. I dropped out of my post-graduate studies at the University of Newcastle in 2019 when I was diagnosed with a rare kidney disease, FSGS Nephrotic Syndrome.”
The young Ekweremadu stated that her family had battled to save her life and had taken her to various hospitals, but said the illness persisted and kept degenerating.
According to her, “I am presently in London, UK, receiving five hours of dialysis three to four times a week. This is at the expense of my family as I am not qualified for NHS due to my immigration status.
“The last three years have been extremely challenging. The charges being faced by my parents in London presently are directly connected to my illness and have complicated matter for me and my family.
“I do not intend to delve into details of this unfortunate development as the matter is still in court. I am, however, optimistic that the truth will prevail and it will end in praise to God.”
Sonia appealed to anybody whom it might please to assist her willingly with a kidney donation.
She stressed, “This appeal would have been utterly unnecessary as every member of my family is eager to donate their kidney to me, knowing that I would do the same for any of them.
“Regrettably, comprehensive medical examination showed that my case of nephrotic syndrome is a genetic illness and the doctors advised against donation from any of my family members, as it would likely reoccur.
“In the time that my father has been incarcerated, he has been diagnosed with acute kidney damage.
“Anybody that is moved by this appeal and wishes to donate his or her kidney to me may send an email to email@example.com and include his or her name, phone number, email address and place of residence.
“Please, note that under the laws of England and Wales, organ donation must be purely driven by compassion and, therefore, no reward is involved.”
In addition, Sonia said she had decided to commit and dedicate the rest of her life to helping people with the challenge of kidney disease, upon her full recovery.