While it is not in doubt, that veteran broadcaster and actor, Sadiq Daba his seriously ill, it is not clear, if he is in dare need of financial help to foot his medical bills.
After dispelling reports of the severity of his sickness two months back, the Kano-born entertainer became liberal recently, when he admitted being diagnosed with prostate cancer, following the earlier reported case of leukaemia.
Amidst outcry by fans on the social media, asking for financial help for the actor, he told The Nation on Monday that he detests the way the media is reporting his health issue. “I’m not a beggar!” he declared.
Daba, who had earlier rescheduled a chat with the reporter on the excuse that he was on his way to his doctor, said, “I’m alive… I’m about to see the doctor. Call me back anytime in the afternoon.”
Whatever the situation was at the hospital, it was confusing, as his reaction, much later, was of disinterest. Declining any useful comment, he said, in very frail voice, that he didn’t want to be misconstrued as ‘begging Nigerians’ for support.
It took another call for the veteran broadcaster to make it clear that he was not soliciting funds because of his condition, even though he disclosed he is receiving treatment at LASUTH and OAUTH.
“My name is Sadiq Daba,” he introduced himself in a feeble voice when told the purpose of the call was to ascertain his health status.
“And I will never ever be a beggar. The way you people (journalists) are going about my case is as if I’m carrying a bowl in hand, moving around Nigeria, begging people; that I am a destitute. I am not.
“Yes, I have health challenges. Yes, I am sick. So, what is the big deal? The way people are taking it, ‘Sadiq Daba is dying’, ‘Sadiq Daba is doing this.’ I’m a journalist. I’m a broadcaster. There are certain ways you can go about it if you want to help somebody. You do not whip up stories to sell your newspaper because you must sell your papers. If I die today, that’s the end of story. I’m no longer news. It’s because I am sick now that I am news.
“Yes, I have challenges but I am not a destitute. If I have been of relevance to my nation and my nation wants to help, so be it. But I am not going to go out of my way to go cap in hand. That is why when your other friend called (The Nation reporter), I said I’m tired. You’re not the only paper who has called me.
“Yes, I am sick. Will I be the first person to be sick? I’m dealing with Prostate, I’m dealing with leukaemia. That is no news. And by the special grace of God, I’ll get over it. I have that faith that God is in control.”
Daba who is currently holed up in Lagos said he is due to take a test on Friday to determine further treatment options.
“If I leave my house, I go to the hospital,” Daba who starred as Bitrus in the now rested soap opera, ‘Cock Crow At Dawn’ and played a major role in October 1, a film by Kunle Afolayan, said.
“If I’m not in the hospital, I’m in my house. I don’t have the luxury of traversing Nigeria as I used to do. I’m over 60. I’m not a small boy.”
He also disclosed that on Friday, he would be going to the hospital to get a biopsy.
“And that will determine whether I would go for proper surgery or not,” he said.
“It is painful. It has to do with the rectal and all of that. You’re battling with Leukaemia, you’re battling with Prostrate… No bi headache or stomach ache. Those ones, you can take tablets and dem don go one time. Dis one na different situation. To God be the glory sha,” he said.