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1-year-on: The story of Haruna Sayeba of blessed memory; how it all started?

Feature Article 1-year-on: The story of Haruna Sayeba of blessed memory; how it all started?
JAN 21, 2021 LISTEN

....But we are only trespassing a temporal cosmos. I say to you, this complicated macrocosm is not our home, so let's make haste slowly and have a large heart of compassion for humanity beyond earthborn fashion.

Compatriots, it is exactly one year after the untimely demise of our dear sister, mother, and friend, Haruna Sayeba of blessed memory.

'Our heroine of unity' passed onto glory on Saturday, January 18, 2020, at the Akomfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Kumasi in the Ashanti Region. She died whilst receiving treatment from a condition the doctors call "Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis/Stephen Johnsons Syndrome".

We, together in the UBUNTU spirit did our utmost best to bail out her dying soul by responding genuinely and promptly to a fundraising campaign.

The bandwagon which I launched on radio and on my social media handles received overwhelming public endorsement and support. In fact, we exceeded our targeted amount of Ghc10,000.00 in the final analysis.

If it was about money, our beloved sister would have been alive today. But the omniscient God had the final say and so on that day, He said "come ye my cherished daughter and rest eternally peacefully in the mansion I have prepared for you".Where life is free, fly, and fair. And where sickness has no power over you anymore. Sad, but reality!

But how did it all start and after a year, what is the story of the children and our financial investment for them?

This is the story:

If my memory set me right, it was lunchtime on one Tuesday, January 14, 2020. As I sat behind the console as a host and pulled my microphone closer to start my usual political talk show, "Aboyamilso", literally translated as "well-packaged information", my mobile phone beeped.

I dashed into my pocket for it and low and behold, it was the phone call of Mr.Alhassan Braimah; a senior Anaesthetic at the West Gonja Catholic Hospital.

With a very sober voice, he asks: where are you at the moment AB? I immediately replied, "on the radio for a program.

He went ahead, "there is an emergency health care at the hospital I want you to intervene by advocating for financial help. A woman in her middle ages contracted a strange sickness and according to the doctors, the family would need to raise Ghc10,000.00 to aid her transfer to the Akomfo Anokye Teaching Hospital for plastic surgery. We are afraid the family may not be able to raise the said amount because footing the initial bills at the West Gonja Hospital is even a problem. It is very urgent and we need to act fast to save a life. I have sent you pictures and videos of the sick woman".

There and then, I turned on my data and went straight to my WhatsApp chats with him. Brethren, I became awestruck and remained taciturn for a while at the pictures and videos I saw. It was very frightening and hair-raising, to say the least. All I could hear myself saying at a point was, "God have mercy! Christ have mercy! God have mercy"...At that point it appeared I was consumed in "self-pity" and not knowing where to start from.

After meditating for a while, I gathered momentum and got back to the sender of the pictures and videos via the same medium. I ask him whether we had the consent of the family to share the pictures and videos by way of soliciting funds. His answer was in the affirmative, yes.

I took a deep breath, took my mobile phone, and reached out to my radio station manager to seek his permission to put the information on the airwaves. He gave his full endorsement and granted that permission.

The battle to rescue a life just started. After contacting and seeking the counsel of a few friends, I crafted an emotional appeal for the fund circular and attached a few of the pictures and shared on all WhatsApp and Facebook platforms I belonged among other social media platforms. (Viewer discretion was advised accordingly).

A fund was launched on my Mobile Money Account and by way of starting, I deposited a token into it and before I could even end my radio program, the donations almost totalled Ghc1,000.00.

The second person I remember; who called up and donated to the account was Rahim Anoma Atabia and from there, I became overwhelmed with calls. The majority of the callers were sympathizing with the situation and giving useful suggestions as to how we could raise the said amount.

The next day, Thursday, January 16, 2020, a call came through from the hospital that they needed some money to take care of the cost of some drugs and a temporary transfer to the Tamale Teaching Hospital since her condition was deteriorating and we had not generated enough to be able to send her to the Akomfo Anokye Teaching Hospital. I had become a contact and reference point since every penny donated was published and displayed publicly. (There was a supporting team of wise counselors).

After advancing the requested amount of Ghc838.00,I realise the campaign needed to be intensified.

All other things aside, sometimes, including food and water, the life-rescuing campaign was intensified. The response from across the globe therefrom became massive. And all I needed to do from that moment was to move from one place to the other to receive donations, regularly check my Mobile Money Account and run constant updates of the contributions through social media and radio.

The hurdle to overcome was the few people that lamented over the too many updates I was running on the contributions that came in a handy minute- after-minute. But I just had to apologize and let them understand the regular updates were very necessary to engender public trust and encourage other people to contribute. Indeed, it was hectic and time-consuming.

At the end of the campaign, a total amount of Ghc15,118.00 was raised.

We were able to meet our target of getting our sister to the Akomfo Anokye Teaching Hospital for plastic surgery on January 16, 2020. But unfortunately, just when we were hopeful that she would overpower her sickness, she gave up the ghost on 18th January 2020, at about 4:00pm.

Refresh your mind by following the link to read the full final accounts and the resolutions implemented after her demise: https://www.blogger.com/blog/post/edit/5483427862363222713/8163707827648189045 .

I would truncate some part of the story and run your memory through events that unfolded after her entombing by way of indicating the progress of work and where we are now.

Though I regularly check on him, this morning, I made a stop at AU collections directly adjacent late Sofo filling station where we had successfully enrolled the senior son of Late Haruna Sayeba with the necessary logistics supplied him to learn a trade. He is mastering to become a professional tailor and I must confess, the boy is extremely serious and enthused with the work.

He is almost a master on his own after barely a year. God-willing, he would be able to start something from the savings we did for them after graduating.

You remember, we also agreed to open a trust fund in the name of the children to cater for their school?

I can confirm that the fund which we started with the remaining balance of Ghc6,050.00 is growing day-by-day and would serve the intended purpose.

The fixed deposit account number is 8031220001222 with the Ghana Commercial Bank, Damongo branch and can only be accessed after 48 months.

The trustees on behalf of the children are Iddrisu Rahinatu and Iddrius Sufuyanu, all close and trusted relatives of late Haruna Sayeba. You can still donate to the account if you so desire, but prompt us of such contribution.

The rest of the story would be told someday...

In all things, let's give glory to God for how far he has brought us.

Most kind regards and God richly bless you for your generosity towards the campaign. We look forward to always working with you in the interest of humanity.

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.”

John 14:1-4 ESV.

Rest in peace to our dear sister! You fought well. You've United many voices across the length and breadth of the globe and increased in us the genuine spirit of compassion for humanity and benevolence.

# UBUNTU ( I am because you are and you are because I am).

Story to be continued...

By: Ananpansah B Abraham (AB)

(Writer/Social Media Campaigner/Reporter/Freelance Journalist)

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