Real Life Issues: #SaveGeorge

”The story you are about to read is a real life story and NOT something I cooked up from my imagination”

A great guy named George.

The first time I saw George, I stared. Not because he is disfigured or ugly or he has three heads but because of his fair skin and brown eyes. The kind of brown eyes Destiny’s Child sang about in their song with the same title. It was first semester 100level. We had just gained admission into University of Ibadan and all we fresh students were doing our course registration. I noticed there was this fair skin girl beside him. They went everywhere together and that was what kept my attention on George. My thoughts: what are two fair skinned people doing together?. We ended up in the same class.

I gained admission to read Teacher Education/English&CRS, George gained admission to read English. I remember my first English class, Mr. Babajide, a lecturer, asked a question and George answered, as I write this I wish I can remember the exact question and answer but what I remember is my reaction: ‘what is this boy talking about?’. I wish I had listened to what he was saying, I wrote that course three times before I eventually passed it. Remember the fair skinned girl in the beginning of this story, she became a permanent recurring decimal by George’s side. Her name is Chinyere. I can’t write about George without writing about Chinyere. She and George were an intellectual match made in heaven and they were both in my class. George is intelligent. To me, he is annoyingly intelligent and with Chinyere’s brains, they were part of the ‘Geek Force’ of the class of 2010 English Department. Maybe because I always wanted to stab class and Adaobi, my school saviour, won’t let me. ‘Olodo’ like me. I would roll my eyes when they answered questions in class or made presentations or did anything that got the lecturers approval. Adaobi and Chinyere became good friends. Chinyere and George were 5&6 and I was Adaobi’s ‘lost sheep’. I didn’t know George personally, we weren’t even friends but I heard a lot about him from Ada and it was mostly about his reading of mystery novel (Ada & George swapped novels), his writing of short stories and poems, his unconventional way of thinking, his direct manner of speaking and his relationship/friendship with Chinyere. I spent 4yrs in the same class with George and I think I can count how many times I said ‘hi’ to him.

We graduated from University of Ibadan in 2010 and I didn’t hear about George until 2 weeks ago. The red light on my Blackberry blinked. I had gotten a message on BBM.

It read:

Today, as a friend, alumni and student of the University of Ibadan, I humbly ask for your support whether you’re an alumni or not, in saving the life of a friend, colleague, hall mate and pride to our school, George Chimezirim Egbuchulam, an alumnus of the Department of English. He needs a kidney transplant that costs 2.5million naira and is currently on admission at the University College Hospital living on a Dialysis Machine. Please whatever amount you can give will help a great deal. In truth, no amount is too small

Account name: George Egbuchulam Account no: 3020722444 First Bank or Account no: 0018310939 Unity Bank. Please if you would like to call or encourage him through text messages, his number is 07035122937. God bless you for support and prayers”.

I read the message twice. ‘No be George be this?’ was my first thought. Then I checked the Recent Updates on BBM and saw his picture on my friend’s DP. I was sad


George is sick with two failed kidneys and in need of a kidney transplant surgery but more importantly he’s in need of the funds to pay for dialysis, the surgery and post-surgery care. Many of his friends have taken to Facebook, Twitter, the streets of U.I and the general public to solicit for the needed funds for George’s surgery. I’m amazed at the number of people who are trying their possible best to #SaveGeorge.

The account number is the same as the one above. If 2,500 people donate N1, 000, we can #SaveGeorge. His life is worth saving.


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