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​Overwhelming show of love for Ayeni Twins

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​Overwhelming show of love for Ayeni Twins
By John Akubo, Lokoja  

How LHF Facilitated Free Separation Of Conjoined Girls In US Hospital
The role played by Linking Hands Foundation (LHF), a non-governmental organisation (NGO), in the successful separation of the Ayeni conjoined twin girls- Miracle and Testimony, has raised the bar in what an average NGO can do to bring succour to the less privileged.
Coming at a time when many of such groups have commercialised their activities, for the economic benefit of their arrowheads, LHF, using its network drew the attention of all stakeholders to the plight of the parents of the twins who hail from Odoere, in Yagba West Local Council of Kogi State, but resident in Enugu State.
Interestingly, founder of the LHF, Mrs. Efe Farinre, was reluctant in engaging the media for any publicity on the subject, while galvanising support for a successful surgery.
But after the successful operation, Farinre explained how her outfit revved up efforts to ensure that the story had a sweet ending
“As part of our Every-Child-Counts Initiative, LHF made a commitment to help solicit financial and non-financial support for all aspects of the care and medical needs of Miracle and Testimony. We reached out to individuals, organisations, corporations and government on behalf of the Ayeni twins. The beauty of the story is how Everyday Nigerians did their bit such that Nigeria and the world have this to celebrate,” the founder started.
According to her, the girls were born in Enugu State, on November 16, 2015, to Mr. Samuel Olusegun Ayeni and Mrs. Mary Abiodun Ayeni, both from Kogi State.  “And LHF was introduced to the Ayeni family on January 6, 2016 via a phone call from an extended friend, an everyday Nigerian.”
The life-changing operation, a highly complex and extremely risky procedure which was carried out free of charge by Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee, United States (US), went on for 18 hours, between November 7 and 8, 2016.
The announcement of the successful procedure on the twins was made on their first birthday, on November 16, 2016, by the hospital.
Farinre continued, “LHF owes a debt of gratitude to our volunteer medical adviser, Dr. Opesanmi Esan, a cardiologist at MidMichigan Medical Center, Michigan, United States for the link to Dr. Uzoma Ben Gbulie, of Le Bonheur Childrens Hospital, both everyday Nigerians in the Diaspora.
“LHF wrote formally to Le Bonheur Childrens on January 24, 2016, requesting pro-bono treatment for the Ayeni twins, and Dr. Gbulie helped with follow-up.  We are grateful to the hospital, for taking on the treatment of the twins at no charge.”
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She explained that prior to receiving the great news from the hospital on May 16, 2016, LHF had got a quotation of $1m from another US hospital it had reached out to for the twins’ treatment.
While the treatment lasted, the Ayenis also received free accommodation at the FedExFamilyHouse, adjacent to the hospital, which is a home away from home for out-of-town families with children receiving treatment at the hospital
As the world basks in the successful separation of the twins, the LHF says it is full of gratitude to God, and thanks to all who linked hands with it to give the two girls the chance to enjoy healthy and wholesome individual lives.
The group gives special thanks to President & CEO of the hospital, Ms Meri Amour, staff members, especially the surgical team that performed the operation, led by Dr. Max Langham, for their dedication to the health and wellbeing of the twins and the welfare of the entire family.
Before embarking on the trip to help Miracle and Testimony, LHF, the founder said, the group used Favour and Faithful Sobowale-Davies’ case, who were born conjoined in Lagos State in 2003, as a case study.

The foundation held meetings to learn from the experience of the then Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Leke Pitan, and Dr. Ade Tinubu (a surgeon at LASUTH), who facilitated the pro-bono surgery performed on the Sobowale-Davies at Johns Hopkins Medical Centre, MD, US.
The LHF further reached out to The Sobowale-Davies family and organised what it termed, “A Meeting of Hope between The Sobowale-Davies and The Ayenis.”  Pastor and Mrs. Sobowale-Davies, visited the Ayenis at LASUTH with their formerly conjoined twin daughters, Favour and Faithful, on April 30, 2016.
As the NGO continued efforts towards securing a successful treatment for the conjoined twins, they got a favourable response from the Kogi State government, which donated N3m to the Ayeni family for their upkeep during their stay in the US.
In a demonstration of exemplary Corporate Social Responsibility, Arik Air Nigeria, got into the picture, providing five free Lagos-New York return tickets to the Ayeni twins, their parents and older sisters.”
Farinre explained further that, “Everyday Nigerians, home and abroad responded positively to our call for donations for the Ayeni family’s New York- Memphis return tickets. They also supported the welfare and successful separation of the Ayeni twins by covering the cost of the family’s international passports, supporting their logistics in Lagos, New York, and Memphis, making donations of baby formula, bottled water, diapers, wipes, etc., as well as joining LHFs Pray for Miracle and Testimony Group.
“Emzor Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, PEP Stores Nigeria, Alma Stores Nigeria and LPacemaker Pharmaceuticals obliged LHFs requests for product donations to the Ayeni twins.”

“In seeking for suitable social support for the Ayenis while in Memphis, LHF was introduced to Pastor Oluyinka Adeyemo, of The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), House on the Rock Parish, Memphis. The Ayenis are members of RCCG. Pastor Adeyemo has been working with LHF to provide spiritual and psychological support to the Ayenis during the twins’ treatment.
Pastor Adeyemo, the ministers and members of RCCG, House on the Rock, continue to give the Ayenis a constant feel of home while in the US,” she added.
The founder attributed the successful separation of the Ayeni twins to what she referred to as the “Spirit of One Nigeria,” with government, corporations, organisations and individuals coming together in service to humanity, and country.
While expressing LHF’s hope that the Ayenis story encourages Nigerians to always be their brothers keepers, and provoke Nigeria to take decisive actions towards world-class healthcare for all Nigerian children regardless of class, tribe or status, she urged Nigerians and the world to keep the Ayeni twins in their thoughts and prayers in order for them to attain full recovery.
According to Le Bonheur Childrens, conjoined twins occur one in 200, 000 live births, with 6 percent of those being ischiopagus, like Miracle and Testimony Ayeni.
The Langham-led surgical team stated that their particular joining exists in maybe five million births.
http://m.guardian.ng/sunday-magazine/overwhelming-show-of-love-for-ayeni-twins/

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56 days after abduction freed 27 students arrive State Police Command, Kaduna

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After 56 days in the kidnappers den 27 students abducted by bandits from Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, Afaka, Kaduna have regained their freedom.

The students were released in Kindanda village, Giwa local government area of the state.
The Sheikh Abubakar Gumi dialogue committee with support from former President Olusegun Obasanjo was said to have facilitated theur release was on Wednesday

The students are the remainder of the 39 abducted two months ago as 10 were released earlier after payment of ransom by parents and the school management, two others had escaped from captivity.
Chairman of the parents’ forum, Mallam Abdullahi Usman, commended the roles played by Obasanjo, Sheikh Gumi and other stakeholders, saying “their facilitation was very helpful in the release of the students.”
Asked if additional ransom was paid to the bandits before the release, Usman said: “I cannot confirm whether ransom was paid or not. Our main joy and happiness is that our students are back.”

Recall that Parents of the kidnapped students on Tuesday protested the prolonged abduction of their wards at the National Assembly complex.

The freed students are different from the 16 students of Greenfield University, Kaduna, who are yet to be released Their kidnappers are threatening to kill enmass, if ransom is not paid.
The freed students were received at the state Police Command Headquarters.
The students, who were escorted by security agents, arrived in two 18-seater Hiace buses and an ambulance. Most of the students appeared weak and could barely walk, as one of the female students was carried by a security agent on mufti.
It was observed that majority of the students appeared in tattered clothes. Some were in their night wears while others dressed half-clad. Journalists were barred from taking shots of the students as they were led into the conference hall of the police command.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai in a statement by Aruwan, charged the students to view their ordeal as a motivation to put the past behind and work hard towards a happier and successful future ahead.

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Gov. Sule urges Nigerians to desist from playing politics with insecurity

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Gov. Sule urges Nigerians to desist from playing politics with insecurity

From Umar Egbunu Muhammed, Lafia

Nasarawa State governor, Abdullahi Sule, has warned Nigerians against the danger in playing politics with the security challenges presently confronting the nation, emphasizing that as a retired major General, President Muhammadu Buhari is in better position to tackle insecurity across the country.

Governor Sule spoke when he appeared as a guest on Channels
Television which was monitored in Lafia.

Reacting to suggestions for the federal government to hire mercenaries to help fight banditry and insurgency in the Northwest and Northeast, he said, he is willing to accept any idea that will restore peace in his state.

The governor, however, affirmed that when he earlier said the country needed foreign support, he was specifically referring to the developed countries of the US and Britain supporting Nigeria with technology to prosecute the war against banditry and insurgency.

He pointed out the the type of security challenges confronting the
country, particularly banditry and insurgency, are not conventional
wars, with other countries like Agfanistan, which took over 40 years to battle the Taliban.

He recalled that during the immediate past administration of former president Goodluck Jonathan, mercenaries were recruited to fight the insurgency in the Northeast, without much impact as Boko Haram continued with their onslaught.

His words: “I think if there is anybody who knows about all these,
it’s Muhammadu Buhari, who rose to the rank of a Major General, who
was been in the military. I don’t play politics with that.”

While expressing reservations about employing the services of
mercenaries to help in addressing the security challenges in the
country, Sule was emphatic in soliciting for foreign backing in the
area of technology, equipment and training of the country’s military
personnel.

“This is the time for the US and Britain to support us, with
technology, equipment and training of our military personnel,” Sule
affirmed.

He debunked claims by Senator Ali Ndume (APC, Borno South) suggesting that state governors are not doing enough to support President Buhari in fighting insecurity, affirming that
governors are doing everything possible to partner and support
security agencies in tackling insecurity.

He maintained that state governors are up to the task, supporting
security agencies with logistics, equipment and ensuring that they
discharge their responsibilities.

On the call for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), to zone
its national chairmanship to the North Central, the governor
reaffirmed his agitation for the party to zone the position to the
North Central and to Nasarawa State in particular.

“The Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), remains the only legacy party yet to produce the national chairman of the party. If the CPC is to be considered, then it’s only natural that North Central Zone and
Nasarawa State in particular, is also considered,” he stated.

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15 women crushed to death as trailer fails break in Imo

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15 women crushed to death as trailer fails break in Imo

About 15 market women have lost their lives at Nkwo Miri Market in Isiala Umuozu in Nwangele Local Government Area of Imo State, after being crushed by a trailer that lost control over brake failure.

Reports had it that the accident happened when the trailer lost control after developing brake failure at the Nkwo Miri Market in Imo State.
The women were engaged in trading by the road side when trailer lost control and rammed into them

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