Many women suffering from vestico vagina fistula, VVF, in have been abandoned by their husbands.
VVF is an abnormal fistulous tract that extends between the bladder and the vagina. It allows the continuous involuntary discharge of urine into the vaginal vault.
PREMIUM TIMES discovered the abandonment on Sunday when the wife of the Plateau State governor, Ragina Lalong, presented relief materials and cash to the women to aid their treatment.
Mrs. Lalong made the presentation on Sunday at the Evangel Specialist Hospital, Jos, as part of activities marking the new year celebration in the state.
She was represented at the event by the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Rufina Grumyem.
PREMIUM TIMES spoke with four of the VVF patients who confirmed the abandonment.
The oldest among those interviewed, 43-year-old Rakiya Yakubu, said she has been suffering from the disease for the past 20 years.
Ms. Yakubu who hails from Adamawa State, said she is a widow and has no child.
“I have been suffering from this sickness for the past 20 years, even before my husband died, I had been battling to pay my hospital bill by myself, until I came to this hospital,” she told our correspondent.
Another patient, 20-year-old Fatima Adamu who hails from Bauchi State, said she was abandoned by her husband two years ago when she was diagnosed of the disease.
“My problems started after I gave birth, though he (the baby) died after two months. When my situation became critical, my husband left me, and I had to return to my parents. They are the one catering for me,” she said.
Similarly, Bitasi Aliyu, 21, from Kano State, said she has spent one year in the hospital without real improvement.
“I do not know the whereabouts of my husband. He has not visited even my family for the past one year.”
But Hawa Ibrahim, 20, said her husband and her parents have been responsible for her hospital bills.
Four of the patients interviewed said they lost their babies during birth.
At the Vom Christian Hospital, the governor’s wife presented gifts to the first baby of the year who was born at 12:30 a.m. on Sunday.
Mrs. Lalong named the girl who weighed 3kg at birth after herself “Ragina”.
The mother of the baby, Keneng Dalyop, said she was healthy, and appreciated the gesture of Mrs. Lalong.
Speaking to journalists on behalf the governor’s wife, the commissioner said the gesture was to assist the downtrodden.
According to her, the gifts will be extended to other children born this week across the 17 local government areas of the state.