Timilehin Leukemia Foundation, a non-governmental organisation that provides care and support for people living with Leukemia, especially children, has urged government to pass a law that will make the act of selling one’s own blood a crime, to discourage commercial blood donors.
Speaking during an event to mark Valentine’s Day celebration in Lagos, the founder, Timilehin Leukemia Foundation, Mrs. Module Janet Oyedele explained that on every Valentine’s Day, the foundation in collaboration with the National Union of Textile, Garment and Tailoring Workers of Nigeria (NUTGTWN) usually organise seminar on various health issues for Lagosians.
According to her, the topic for this year, “How Our Eating Habits Can Affect Our Health,” has secondary school students who were invited to the event because of its health benefits.
“In addition, we also carry out voluntary blood tests and donations. It is true that there is no greater gift that one can give on this special day than to donate blood to save lives.
From my personal experience, touts normally hang around our Teaching hospitals to sell their blood for as much as N20, 000. The patient also has to pay N7,000 to get the blood screened. This is a sad manifestation of the state of our economy and man’s insensitivity to the plight of those who are in dire need of blood.
“The government as a matter of urgency should give priority to cancer patients by making blood available and accessible to all cancer victims.”
She said this can be done by creating awareness on the benefits of donating blood. “The N7,000 charged to screen blood be also abolished to lessen the burden on cancer victims.