LUTH's Shame: The Heartbreaking Story of Olaleye Adenibuyan and Unknown Others, Victims of Severe Negligence Under Past and Present Clinical and Academic Leadership

Source: Prof. John Egbeazien Oshodi
L-R: Prof Adeyemo, CMD of LUTH,                                      Victim Olaleye Adenibuyan         and                  VC Ogunsola
L-R: Prof Adeyemo, CMD of LUTH, Victim Olaleye Adenibuyan and VC Ogunsola

In a scathing exposé published by Punch Newspapers on February 26, 2024, the harrowing details surrounding the tragic demise of Mr. Olaleye Adenibuyan unveiled the pervasive unscrupulousness and negligence entrenched within Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH). His passing, enveloped in circumstances beyond comprehension, left shattered hearts in its wake and thrust the precarious state of Nigeria's healthcare system into the harsh glare of scrutiny. Under the jurisdiction of Vice-Chancellor Folasade T. Ogunsola, LUTH, a constituent institution of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), has witnessed a decline in its once-illustrious reputation under her tenure, alongside the Chief Medical Director, Professor Wasiu Lanre Adeyemo. Systemic failures and ethical transgressions have marred the institution, raising the looming question: will President Bola Tinubu allow this travesty to be swept aside as just another manifestation of Nigeria's systemic decay?

In its media statement addressing the tragic death of Olaleye Franklin Adenibuyan, the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) missed a critical opportunity to convey genuine sympathy and condolences to the family and the public. The absence of an initial expression of heartfelt empathy in the statement not only reflects poorly on the institution's response but also fails to acknowledge the profound grief experienced by Adenibuyan's loved ones and the broader community.

Furthermore, the defensive posture adopted in the statement, coupled with attempts to refute allegations without addressing the gravity of the situation, further exacerbates concerns surrounding transparency and accountability. Rather than openly acknowledging the seriousness of the incident and expressing empathy for the loss, the statement appears focused on defending the hospital's reputation.

Additionally, Ayodeji Oluwole, chairman of the hospital’s medical advisory committee, mentioned that a committee has been inaugurated to investigate the allegations surrounding Adenibuyan's death. However, this move is met with skepticism, as any serious investigation cannot be carried out by members of the university itself. It's akin to allowing the accused to investigate themselves, a scenario ripe for conflicts of interest and biased outcomes.

The heart-wrenching narrative of Mr. Olaleye Adenibuyan not only exposes the grim realities of Nigeria's crumbling healthcare system but also serves as a poignant reflection of the pervasive societal decay that corrodes our once revered institutions. The distressing truth of purportedly prestigious universities, esteemed academics, dedicated clinicians, and corrupt administrators compounds the anguish of individuals like Adenibuyan, amplifying the prevailing sense of disillusionment and despair that grips our nation. How could a devoted son of Nigeria, steadfast in his allegiance to his homeland despite residing in the United States of America, meet such a tragic fate within the walls of LUTH?

His untimely demise, stemming from a fatal fall during his visit to Nigeria, stands as a scathing indictment of the gross incompetence and heartless indifference displayed by the clinical and academic leadership of LUTH. Instead of upholding their solemn duty to deliver adequate medical care, they callously allowed Adenibuyan's life to slip away, tarnishing the once illustrious reputation of an institution heralded as a pinnacle of medical excellence.

The distressing realities within Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), once hailed as a paragon of medical excellence, now paint a stark picture of systemic inadequacies plaguing Nigeria's healthcare system. The chronic lack of essential equipment, shortage of functional surgery rooms, and an insufficient workforce lay bare the institution's descent into incompetence and mismanagement. Yet, in typical fashion, the LUTH leadership, like other Nigerian institutions, will likely resort to defensive maneuvers, possibly weaving a web of lies and deception to shield their personal interests and salvage the institution's tarnished reputation.

As usual, promises of probes and consequences ring hollow, mere lip service to appease the masses while the perpetrators remain entrenched in their positions of power. It's laughable to expect accountability from those conducting the investigations when they themselves are complicit in the malfeasance. The only viable solution lies in the appointment of trusted ethical investigators from the private sector, both locally and internationally, to uncover the truth and hold the guilty parties accountable.

In a society where genuine introspection and corrective action are shunned in favor of dubious deflections and public relations tactics, it's no wonder that the cycle of corruption and negligence persists unchecked. The cries for sensible governance, security, economic stability, education, social services, and healthcare echo across the nation, yet fall on deaf ears as the likes of LUTH's clinical and academic leadership remain deaf to the pleas of the people.

The urgency for change reverberates through the corridors of injustice, calling for the amplification of the aggrieved voices through unwavering solidarity and peaceful protest. Let the tears of the known and unknown victims shatter the complacency of the corrupt elite, for their silence births a perpetuation of suffering and injustice. In the end, their actions epitomize a profound descent into self-destruction and idiocy, leaving behind a trail of shattered lives and dreams.

In the shadow of this bleak reality, the harrowing plight of Mr. Olaleye Adenibuyan emerges as a poignant symbol of the systemic failures entrenched within the very fabric of LUTH. Despite his admission to the ICU and his family's valiant efforts to secure funds for his treatment, Adenibuyan faced insurmountable barriers at every juncture. The scarcity of critical equipment and the labyrinth of bureaucratic hurdles thwarted his path to timely medical intervention, sealing his fate within the grip of institutional incompetence.

I do not merely suggest, but firmly assert, that LUTH's debacle did not commence with the present leadership, including the vice chancellor, but rather, they all share the cumulative blame for the deep and chronic rot that now consumes the institution. May his restless spirit haunt those accountable for his anguish, invoking a reckoning that transcends the confines of mortal understanding.

Yet, the condemnation of Adenibuyan's treatment transcends the confines of LUTH, echoing across the vast expanse of Nigeria's healthcare landscape. The resonant voices of reason decry not only the immediate failures in his care but also the endemic mismanagement of resources and the glaring absence of governmental accountability. The relentless pursuit of personal gain, at the expense of the public's welfare, fueled by a culture steeped in corruption and entitlement, perpetuates a cycle of unyielding suffering and despair. Adenibuyan's tragic demise serves as a stark testament to this bitter reality, casting a shadow of shame upon those who prioritize greed over the sanctity of human life.

The insatiable drive for personal enrichment, often at the detriment of the public good, nurtured within a culture entrenched in cutthroat competition for power and status, thrives on corruption and entitlement. This toxic cycle perpetuates unrelenting anguish and hopelessness among the populace. Adenibuyan's untimely passing stands as a poignant illustration of this harsh truth, shaming those who prioritize their own greed above the intrinsic value of human existence.

As the world mourns the loss of Mr. Adenibuyan, a former Nigerian police officer who frequently returned from America to reconnect with his cultural roots, his untimely departure serves as a haunting reflection of the profound sickness gnawing at the core of Nigeria's healthcare infrastructure. The stark inability to provide even the most basic of care for its citizens not only casts a damning shadow upon the Nigerian government but also lays bare the festering societal decay that permeates every echelon of governance. Adenibuyan's tragic demise stands as an indelible testament to a system that shamelessly prioritizes self-interest over the sacred value of human life, underscoring the dire imperative for comprehensive restructuring and unwavering accountability.

Even amid the facade of progress and investment in Nigeria's healthcare system, exemplified by institutions like Lagos University Teaching Hospital, the depths of moral decay within certain factions of its staff, management, and leadership remain unfathomable. Instead of safeguarding these valuable resources for the greater good, it is not uncommon to hear of individuals brazenly exploiting their positions to siphon off new medical equipment, diverting them to bolster their private ventures. Patients, ensnared in the tangled web of corruption, are either coerced or lured away from public medical facilities to these individuals' clandestine clinics, enticed by the illusion of superior care derived from resources stolen from the very institutions meant to serve them. May the restless spirits of those like Adenibuyan haunt these perpetrators incessantly, burdening their every waking moment with the weight of their despicable deeds.

It is as though a malevolent force, steeped in antisocial tendencies and festering psychological disturbances, has taken root within the hearts of many. These pervasive issues, ingrained in the fabric of our society since time immemorial, persist unabated despite sporadic government initiatives aimed at fortifying academic and general hospitals. While the clarion call for enhanced infrastructure and bolstered support for medical professionals resounds loudly, the insidious machinations of corrupt individuals across various sectors persist, callously hoarding resources for personal enrichment. In their wake, they leave behind shattered lives like Adenibuyan's, mere casualties in their relentless pursuit of ill-gotten gains.

In the aftermath of media revelations detailing the appalling consequences of neglect and malfeasance within Nigeria's healthcare realm, one would anticipate swift and resolute action. Yet, in any rational, ethically sound institution, the leadership of LUTH would face immediate suspension. However, in Nigeria, the rot runs deep and thick like the foulest of curses. May the righteous fury of the divine descend upon you all, for your sins against humanity are as vast and profound as the abyss itself. Adenibuyan should not have suffered such a fate, it's an egregious injustice that cries out for accountability and reform.

At the heart of this disgrace lies the very institutions that were once revered as bastions of knowledge and enlightenment – the universities themselves, including teaching and clinical-based universities. These citadels of learning, meant to uphold the highest standards of academic integrity, have tragically succumbed to the seductive allure of easy money and political influence. Instead of nurturing a culture of excellence, they have become breeding grounds for exploitation and moral decay.

Even amidst this darkness, there are those few genuine clinical scholars who dare to speak out against the prevailing tide of corruption. Yet their voices are drowned out by the cacophony of deceit and malevolence that permeates the halls of academia. The credibility of the entire educational system is eroded as a result, casting a long shadow of doubt over the integrity of our institutions.

Perhaps most distressing of all is the realization that these nefarious influences are not contained within the confines of academia but extend their poisonous tendrils to the next generation of students. Incoming students, including those in the medical field, are unwittingly groomed in the ways of exploitation, perpetuating a cycle of wrongdoing that seems destined to repeat itself ad infinitum.

Thelma's journey from America to Nigeria epitomizes the desperation and anguish felt by countless families caught in the grip of Nigeria's healthcare crisis. With every mile traveled, her hopes soared, fueled by love and a fervent desire to save her husband. Yet upon her arrival at Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), her dreams were cruelly shattered by the harsh reality that awaited her.

The once-vibrant corridors of LUTH now stood as silent witnesses to neglect and decay, a stark contrast to the sterile efficiency of American hospitals. Thelma's heart sank as she beheld the dilapidated state of the facilities, each crumbling wall and flickering light a testament to the suffering endured by patients and their families.

With every passing moment, the weight of their predicament bore down upon her, driving her to navigate the labyrinthine bureaucracy of LUTH in search of answers that seemed perpetually out of reach.

But answers remained elusive within the convoluted corridors of LUTH, where chaos reigned and communication faltered at every turn. Thelma was trapped in a stifling vortex of misinformation and bureaucratic obstacles, her impassioned pleas for aid ignored amid the hospital's deafening silence. Despite her unyielding determination, she was met with a chilling indifference and heart-wrenching apathy from the very staff entrusted with the lives of their patients.

Undeterred by the encroaching despair, Thelma pressed forward with unwavering resolve, driven by an unshakeable commitment to save her beloved husband. She poured her entire being into the endeavor, exhausting her meager savings to procure vital medical equipment, including the staggering sum of N400,000 for an intracranial pressure monitoring machine supposedly absent from LUTH's inventory. Yet, even as she relinquished her every last resource, her soul was tormented by a haunting suspicion of pervasive malpractice festering within the hospital's walls.

In a cruel twist of fate, Thelma found herself compelled to part with an additional N800 for soap and gloves—mundane essentials that should have been generously supplied in any reputable medical institution. These exorbitant demands laid bare the shocking extent of LUTH's deficiencies, thrusting an intolerable burden upon patients and their anguished families to compensate for the institution's unforgivable failings. The mere thought of such a request for basic hygiene items amidst the gravest of circumstances is a chilling indictment of the institution's callous disregard for human dignity. Good god, even soap and gloves? One can't help but wonder, were they also expected to furnish a bed? May the spirit and ethics of Hippocrates unleash the harshest of retributions upon those responsible, drowning them in a deluge of tears and remorse.

Three days after he was admitted, LUTH said Adenibuyan needed an intracranial pressure monitoring machine. But this teaching hospital does not have the machine. When needed, it was explained to us, it is rented from outside. Cost: N400,000. The family paid. But the machine was not delivered until two days later. And when it was delivered, it was left by the corner of Adenibuyan’s bed for days, unused. The sheer callousness and negligence displayed in leaving the machine idle for days, despite the family's payment, is a vile and reprehensible act. It showcases a blatant disregard for human life and highlights the insidious rot that has permeated LUTH's core. How could those entrusted with the duty of saving lives stoop so low as to abandon critical medical equipment, allowing it to gather dust while patients suffer needlessly? The depths of their depravity are unfathomable.

The long-awaited arrival of the monitoring machine should have heralded a glimmer of hope amidst the prevailing darkness. Instead, it served as a bitter reminder of LUTH's flagrant inadequacies, as the vital equipment languished abandoned and neglected for agonizing days—a silent testament to the immeasurable suffering it could have alleviated.

Thelma's shattered heart cried out desperately for a lifeline, a glimmer of hope to rescue her husband from the abyss of despair. She clung to the faint possibility of whisking him away to safety, perhaps seeking refuge in the sanctuary of America, where salvation beckoned with tantalizing allure. Yet, as her dreams crumbled into dust before her weary eyes, the specter of despair loomed larger than ever, casting its ominous shadow over the shattered remnants of her hope. The psychological toll inflicted by such profound neglect is immeasurable, seeping into the very core of Thelma's being and etching indelible scars upon her soul.

In a society seemingly consumed by native traditions, Islam, and Christianity, where many flock to churches, mosques, or embrace indigenous customs, one would expect a pervasive ethos of humility and compassion to prevail. Yet, the reality is starkly different, as evidenced by the devilish actions that led to Adenibuyan's agonizing ordeal. The hypocrisy is jarring, the veneer of faith masking a profound lack of genuine empathy and ethical conduct.

The echoes of Adenibuyan's suffering reverberate through Thelma's mind, intertwining with her deepest fears and darkest thoughts. She grapples with feelings of helplessness and betrayal, questioning the very essence of humanity in a world tainted by such callous indifference. The weight of her anguish becomes a burden too heavy to bear, a constant reminder of the fragility of life and the cruelty of fate.

May the perpetrators of this heinous neglect be haunted by the echoes of their negligence, their souls tormented by the relentless torment of remorse. Let justice, swift and unyielding, find them in the depths of their moral decay. Regardless of their professed faith, may they face the consequences of their actions under the judgment of any deity they claim to worship. The anguish inflicted upon Adenibuyan and his loved ones reverberates with tearful pain, a stark reminder of the profound human cost of such callous indifference.

In the end, Mr. Adenibuyan's passing was not merely a loss for Thelma and her family; it was a tragedy that echoed throughout the corridors of LUTH. His death stands as a stark condemnation of a healthcare system in turmoil, where patients are abandoned to suffer in the shadows, forgotten and forsaken. Thelma's agonizing ordeal serves as a piercing reminder of the human toll exacted by corruption and incompetence—a rallying cry in the face of unfathomable agony.

In a just and rational world, the middle and senior leadership of LUTH, including the chief medical officer and vice-chancellor, or those officials directly responsible for patient care, would face charges of criminal negligence, manslaughter through gross negligence, or related criminal offenses and civil lawsuits. But alas, in Nigeria, corruption runs rampant, plunging us into the depths of moral decay.

Let it be etched in the annals of history that the pursuit of a degree, especially in the esteemed field of medicine, has been trivialized, attainable by those with fleeting interests and minimal dedication. However, the possession of a certificate or license should transcend mere accreditation; it must symbolize a deep-seated commitment to continuous learning and unwavering adherence to ethical principles, embodying the essence of a genuine healer.

An unyielding mandate requiring annual continued education is imperative, complemented by a comprehensive curriculum covering ethics, medical errors, integrity, and responsibility. Sadly, these crucial standards are frequently overlooked, exposing gaping wounds of mistrust and dishonoring the sacred Hippocratic oath.

For authentic healers, successfully passing a rigorous assessment of moral integrity and professional competence must be an absolute prerequisite. Merely holding a degree or possessing technical skills falls short; one must exhibit an unwavering dedication to the highest ethical standards. Upholding these principles is essential to reinstating faith in the medical profession and ensuring that patients receive the care and respect they rightfully deserve. To veer from this path is to betray the solemn trust bestowed upon us by society.

Hence, the imperative for periodic education and testing to renew licenses must be embraced. It is through this ongoing process of learning and evaluation that we reinforce the significance of ethics and competence in healthcare practice. Prioritizing ethics in both medical education and practice is not merely desirable; it is an imperative to uphold the integrity of the profession and safeguard the well-being of patients.

Moreover, in addition to educational prerequisites, there exists a pressing need for psychological screening to identify potentially detrimental individuals. Given the horrors witnessed in incidents such as these, it is crucial to identify traits like psychopathy, indifference, substance abuse, corrupt tendencies, and other indicators of unsuitability for medical practice. We must ensure that those entrusted with the lives of others possess not only the necessary knowledge and skills but also the empathy and compassion inherent to genuine healers.

Clinicians, once revered as guardians of life's sanctity, have plunged into the abyss of moral bankruptcy, callously forsaking their sworn duty to "first, do no harm." Their realm now teems with the echoes of incompetence, the stench of medical apathy, and the harrowing specter of lives needlessly lost. The sanctity of the Hippocratic oath, once revered as the cornerstone of medical ethics, now lies shattered, a mere relic of a bygone era, trampled underfoot by the rapacious greed and unfeeling indifference that have tainted the very soul of healing. Permit me a moment of searing sarcasm—may the furious tempest of the Hippocratic deities descend upon you, unleashing torrents of righteous wrath to cleanse the blight of your callous transgressions against the sacred tenets of medicine.

Behind the scenes, corrupt administrators pull the strings, enriching themselves while the very institutions they were entrusted to safeguard crumble under their avarice. Embezzlement, kickbacks, and cronyism reign unchecked, draining resources that could have saved lives and improved facilities. While students languish and patients suffer, these administrators fill their coffers with blood money.

The shame of our universities, academics, clinicians, and corrupt administrators stains the fabric of our society, eroding trust and dismantling the social contract. If left unaddressed, this moral decay will consume us like a ravenous cancer, devouring the soul of our nation.

May the spirits of those responsible for this atrocity be haunted by the torment of their conscience, and may justice find them in the depths of their depravity. Shame on you, you abominable fools. We must embrace ethics as the cornerstone of our profession, lest we succumb to the darkness that pervades our ranks.

It is time for accountability and reform. Those who betray the public trust must face the consequences of their actions, and measures must be implemented to ensure transparency and integrity. Genuine scholars and compassionate clinicians must reclaim their professions from the clutches of corruption, restoring honor to their fields.

The disappearance of funds earmarked for life-saving equipment, squandered by corrupt administrators, plunges patients into a nightmare of neglect and suffering. The repercussions of this institutionalized corruption are dire, leaving patients without access to vital resources and condemning them to prolonged agony.

LUTH's decline serves as a grim reminder of the insidious nature of corruption and its devastating impact on society's most vulnerable. Only through decisive action can we root out corruption, restore transparency, and ensure that healthcare funds fulfill their intended purpose: to heal, to save lives, and to offer hope to those in need.

Until then, unscrupulousness will cast its dark shadow over LUTH, tarnishing its once-illustrious reputation. Only by confronting intentional and unintentional negligence and endemic corruption head-on can LUTH and its likes reclaim their former glory and fulfill their noble duty to serve the people of Nigeria with dignity and compassion.

As highlighted earlier, LUTH's response to the tragic death of Olaleye Franklin Adenibuyan lacked empathy and leaned towards defensiveness. Despite announcing an investigation, doubts persist due to its internal nature, raising concerns about impartiality. Entrusting internal entities with such inquiries inherently invites reluctance to accept blame, tarnishing the process's integrity. Instead, an impartial and diverse body, including individuals from within and outside Nigeria, is crucial to ensure fairness and transparency.

It is imperative for the federal government to engage an independent team of investigators to ensure accountability and transparency. Only through such autonomous measures can we uncover the truth, deliver justice, and restore the tarnished integrity of our healthcare institutions. Beyond Nigeria's borders, the ramifications of this tragedy are significant. Families of the victims deserve closure and assurance that their loved ones did not perish in vain, restoring trust in the healthcare system and preventing future anguish.

Institutions like the University of Lagos, particularly LUTH, must seize this moment to introspect and enact meaningful reforms. By acknowledging their failings, implementing robust changes, and prioritizing patient welfare, they can rebuild public trust and safeguard institutional integrity. My vision extends beyond incremental progress; I advocate for a profound overhaul to prevent such tragedies from recurring. Let us aspire to a society where accountability and compassion reign, and where the healthcare system stands as a beacon of excellence and integrity.

In conclusion, I deeply recognize the weight of my words as I address these profound issues. Despite numerous past endeavors at reform, counsel, exposure, and even prayers, the fundamental challenges persist. Therefore, I fervently hope that my impassioned appeals will serve as a catalyst for transformative change within leadership, offering invaluable guidance to students and staff, and ultimately catalyzing significant institutional improvements.

My vision transcends mere incremental progress; I advocate for a sweeping overhaul that prevents tragedies like Adenibuyan's from recurring. I envision a society where accountability and compassion reign supreme, and where the healthcare system stands as an unwavering beacon of excellence and integrity. Let our collective efforts pave the path to a brighter future, where every life is esteemed, and every patient receives the dignified care they rightfully deserve.

Psychologist John Egbeazien Oshodi

Professor John Egbeazien Oshodi, born in Uromi, Edo State, Nigeria, is an American-based police and prison scientist, forensic psychologist, and legal psychologist. He’s a government advisor on forensic-clinical psychological services in the USA and the founder of the Dr. John Egbeazien Oshodi Foundation for Psychological Health. With a significant role in introducing forensic psychology to Nigeria through N.U.C. and Nasarawa State University, he’s also a former Secretary-General of the Nigeria Psychological Association. He’s taught at esteemed institutions like Florida Memorial University, Florida International University, Nova Southeastern University, and more, and is currently an online faculty member at Weldios University, Nexus International University, and Walden University. [email protected]

Disclaimer: "The views expressed on this site are those of the contributors or columnists, and do not necessarily reflect TheNigerianVoice’s position. TheNigerianVoice will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements in the contributions or columns here."