Air Clinic Writing Contest: They Are 'Smoking', But We Are Dying!
They said smokers are liable to die young, but they did the 'smoking', while we were dying! Many nights we choked and coughed and eyes were itching from 'gases of death', we wondered that we would stay alive through storms of darkness both day and night..
Belema is my name, and my home is in the creeks of Delta, riverine of Koko village in the Niger Delta of Nigeria. Our village is exploited to the core but the wealth is far from me. Health they say is wealth, but neither comfort nor wellness is ours to enjoy. My skies are full of dark smokes, flared gases of carbons' burn, puff by puff so goes our health, oh who will respond to my peoples' ordeal! So many mornings saw the open weeping and cries of death as mothers wept for their dead loved ones who had being lost to a mysterious death overnight while the rest were coughing, hoping to make it till morning, which in any case had been a common occurrence as part of life around the creeks. Besides the sicknesses that saw so many bedridden hoping that the affordable alternative or native medical treatments could offer them solution. We however gained the knowledge of the dangers of such emissions, now fate is left our hands, but even if I go away, will the entire village go with me.. Who will save us from these fumes?
Air pollution is a killer anyhow, acute and chronic its effects are bad. The toxic and health disorders most of the exposed people suffer are Asphyxiation (leading to Carboxyhaemoglobin), Asthma, COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), Cough, Suffocation etc. Alot of these medical conditions are beyond the locals to take care of. We keep crying out to Nigeria, stop gas flaring!
Gas flaring is killing people, day by day
so the health of the exposed people are risked to the dangers
of those fumes. Dear Nigeria, stop smoking!!