Mr. Frank Archibong, Chairman, Eket Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State, has sponsored the surgery on a three-year old boy, Emmanuel Akaniyene, who is a patient of eye cancer.
Akaniyene, who hails from Etinan Local Government Area of the state, was abandoned by his parents a year ago.
In an interview with NAN on Thursday in Eket, Mrs Elizabeth Akpan, the Co-ordinator of Child Rights and Rehabilitation Network (CRARN), an NGO, said Akaniyene was abandoned by his parents due to financial constraint.
She said that the boy was diagnosed of chronic eye cancer, which he had suffered for over one year.
“I took the little boy to the funeral of the late Archibong, brother to the Chairman of Eket LGA, in a life threatening situation,’’ she said.
She stated that in spite of the grieving and mournful state of the Eket first family, Archibong who doubles as the ALGON Chairman gave the sum of N.4m for the immediate surgery and rehabilitation of master Akaniyene.
According to her, the surgery was successfully carried out at Mercy Hospital in Abak Local Government Area of the state.
Elizabeth explained that due to the severity of the ailment and the fast spread of the cancer, Akaniyene was kept in the hospital to undergo chemotherapy.
In his remarks, Mr Samuel Itauma, Founder of the CRARN, thanked the council boss for the gesture, describing the council boss as a leader, who feels the pulse of the people.
He said that there was no other way to impact on humanity than investing in the health of the people.
Itauma urged stakeholders, state governments and spirited individuals to imitate the kind gesture and true essence of leadership of the council boss.
“When a leader invests in education, health and job creation, then you can confidently say you have a leader and Archibong is one of them,’’ he said.
Itauma called for partnership from government agencies and NGOs to further aid in protecting child rights and to encourage better living condition for children in their care.
CRARN was founded in 2003 with a mission to reduce the rate of abandoned and street children and ensuring their rehabilitation and reintegration into the society.