Focus on Africa #2: First Aid and superstition

in #news2 months ago (edited)


Image by manseok Kim from Pixabay



Last week Wednesday which was 10th April, 2024 Junior pope, one of my favourite Nigerian movie actor passed away. Not just him, other people also lost their lives on that same day in that same place.


The reason behind his death was carelessness and un-logical reasoning among the people that were around when the accident happened.


One thing could have saved that young man life, but due to some unreasonable superstitious beliefs which could be trace within the African world, that young man passed away leaving behind his three children and wife.


Cause of death


Carelessness: I mentioned carelessness because they were travelling on river Niger without a life jacket. It's unfortunate that no one wore a life jacket in the speed boat. That is carelessness. Atleast, if they had wore a life jacket, it would have been easier to saved them, because they would be floating and as such easier to be seen by the marine police.

It is sad, because most Africans feel that if they can do something , then there is no need for protective measures. But this is a wrong narrative, get rid of it.



Un-logical reasoning(superstition): There is a common belief here that when someone is drown, they should be taken to people with mystic powers so that they can be saved. The reason behind this silly belief is what I wouldn't want to start talking about now on this post, maybe that would be next time.But here is the question... Is that what is supposed to be done with someone that is drown, helpless and maybe struggling inside to survive?, shouldn't it be nice to atleast give that person first aid and think of taking the person to the hospital...?


This part was missed and that's the reason this young man and the rest of his colleagues lost their lives.


A simple CPR would have saved his life! Unfortunately, the people around him who were supposed to be the only helping hands didn't know how to do it, and they did not even have the interest to do it. All they could think of doing was to make a video on Facebook showing that they are there live with Junior pope. They did this for clout chasing.

The next thing they could thought of - was to take him to a juju shrine because of the silly superstitious beliefs.



On this article, I would take time to talk about CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation). A simple techniques that works in many life threatening situations. Yet, many are ignorant of this technique and so we'll be considering today, how to do a CPR, why it could be important and in what cases can a CPR be achieved?


I was trained many years ago on how to carry out CPR incase of emergency. I have also made a lot of research on this and I believe this would be very useful.



First, let's have a clear view of CPR


It's an emergency procedure performed manually to preserve the brain function of one in cardiac arrest. It could be emergency situations like an accident, drowning or sudden slum where the person's heart stops beating and becomes unresponsive leading to suffocation.



It maintains blood circulation and oxygenation to vital organs until there's a professional medical care.


There are several risk factors that can lead to a cardiac arrest hence a CPR. let's look at those:..


🟢Heart attack: Heart attack isn't a cardiac arrest. But, could otherwise be called myocardial infarction. it is the blockage of blood to the heart decreasing it's pumping efficiency.


🟢Arrhythmia: These are abnormal heart sounds. Doctors and other medical can detect this using a stethoscope.


🟢Suffocation: When there's a lack of oxygen flow to the blood stream and brain, it can cause suffocation and effect, a heart attack.


🟢Severe trauma: Very severe injuries like those sustained in accidents or falls can affect the heart causing a cardiac arrest.


🟢Drug overdose: Some drugs are very likely to affect the heart and causing it to stop



So next time you see someone who's having difficulty breathing, or someone who was just rescued from drowning, it's not time to run the person to a herbalist, or what Nigeria known as juju man (People with magic power) or conjurer like the case of the famous Junior pope, a Nigerian actor who died in a boat capsize.



Instead of offering a CPR, junior pope was rushed to a native doctor. it could have been a different situation if he was given a CPR immediately when he was out of the water but the by-standers were blinded by the African diabolical believe to consult the spirit realm first before taking him to the hospital or even conducting a simple CPR.



It's rather sad that many know what to do in emergencies needing a CPR but not how to actually perform it becomes an issue. I was fortunate enough to be thought by army personal who gave us training during my NYSC orientation So here are simple steps to guide you:

✅Assess the area: Take away harmful objects around and make sure it's safe for both you and the victim

✅Check victims responsiveness: You could hold his wrist firmly to feel his pulse and scream loudly over his shoulders asking if he's ok . Don't forget to call for help if the person isn't responsive.

✅Open airway: Make sure it's well ventilated, turn the person on his back, tilt th e head back and lift their chin to increase air flow.

✅Chest compression: with the heel of both hands one on the other, place it on the victims chest and push hard and fast at about 100-120 compression per minute.

✅Mouth to mouth resuscitation: still with a tilted head, pinch the victims nose and give two breaths into the person's mouth.

✅Continue chest compression and alternate in between 30 chest compression and 2 mouth to mouth resuscitation. continue until medical help arrives.

Being a good rescue techniques, the procedure could differ a little for children, infants and pregnant women.


For children both hands are placed between the nipples and depth of compression just about 5 to 6cm to avoid damaging the child's heart.


For infants below 1 year, place 2 fingers or 3 with a compression of about 4cm to avoid breaking the baby's heart


For pregnant women: It's ideal to lie on their left side to relieve pressure on the inferior vena cava while doing the CPR. Hand placement may differ due to size of breast or chest shape during pregnancy. But don't compress too deeply to avoid injuring the foetus.


Moreover, after a successful resuscitation, the pregnant victim Need's to monitor the well being of the foetus and treat any underlying cause of cardiac arrest.


If you never knew how to perform a CPR, I'd bet you've learnt a lot about it already from this post. For additional information you could research about AED (Automated external defibrillator) which could be very efficient in cases of cardiac arrest.


But don't forget always to seek medical help ASAP and always keep this simple but life saving technique handy. You might need it someday.


My heart goes out to the Junior pope's family and the rest of his colleagues who also passed away that same day with him.


Please do well to share your opinion on this, It can be very helpful and I would really appreciate.

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I completely understand the point of your post and I admire your knowledge and skills, practical skills that should be taught in school, to all of us (as I think we should be taught in school many other important things for our lives). At the same time, I am amazed at the local traditions, and if we are going to compare Nigeria with Bulgaria again - no, we diverge on this point. In Bulgaria, people turn to doctors, of course, when they can afford it financially. But now I think of that case of my GP who died last year while still of working age and her colleagues said that if she was lucky enough to be driven to the next big city where there were really good doctors she would have been saved. But unfortunately she was taken to another city where there are not very good doctors. I.e. the problem here is that the doctors are not good, so even if you turn to a doctor in such a situation, the odds are not entirely on your side.
On the other hand, however, every incident has its rational and its irrational side. When a man dies in such an absurd manner as the actor you speak of, I have nothing else to say except that it was fate. And what if those superstitious and not so educated people around you are talking about, maybe felt it, because educated people, those who have knowledge and believe science unconditionally, sometimes lose touch with other forces that are rather felt, than are understood. They may have felt that this was the fate of this person and therefore nothing could be done. 🤔
This is just some guesswork, just to ease your frustration. 🙃

Thank you for such great commendation. Honestly, I really feel this should be tought in schools, seminars should be carried out in varrious organizations to train people on how to perform a CPR.

More lives could be saved in a bad situation like this.

if we are going to compare Nigeria with Bulgaria again - no, we diverge on this point.

I would agree with you on this. You know, the problem with some of us Africans is that we hold on to some silly superstitious beliefs alot.

In a real sense, most of those things were just a mere myth spread by our fourfathers just to put fear to others in other to avoid something bad.

Some that were truthful later mentioned that most of those things never existed.

It is sad that even some educated fellow still fall into some of these lies today...., even when life is involve? That's stupidity..., and even more annoying now that lives are gone.
Personally, I don't believe in superstition.

This is just some guesswork, just to ease your frustration. 🙃

I get it right, and guess what? You just did! 😊

Nice writeupIt was really a sad situation for this death accident at river naija .This was due to carelessness that jnr pope and crew members died .I think it was negligence from Both the team members and especially the production manager .She was suppposed to ensure everyone was supposed to put on life jackets,before embarking the boat journey with crew members.It’s shows how careless and unprofessional the producer management team was .

When I saw the incident on Facebook I felt bad. Jnr pope was one of the actors and contents creators I enjoyed following the page . I wish they could all survived but unfortunately carelessness could not be avoided.

Each time I still run to the instagram page of jnr pope to watch his past video .May God console the family of the makeup artist and the rest of the crew members who were victims of death . Also, I pray God should continue to take care of Jnr pope wife and kids .Unfortunately is a bad incident that everyone need to learn from this .May their souls keep resting in peace 🙏

Great article. It was really sad to see people act so ignorantly and lose the life of a promising man to superstition. I hope the govt can incorporation basic CPR training into the curriculum. Either in school or at least during NYSC.

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