With two days to go before the planned departure of actor Eric Mabedi for a surgery in India, the Ministry of Health is yet to come forward to provide his itinerary.
Ministry of Health (MoH) committed itself to facilitate Mabedi’s trip to India where he is due to undergo a kidney transplant due to his long-term diabetic problem and the ministry subsequently announced that the actor would leave on October 28.
The local media on October 16 quoted MoH spokesperson Joshua Malango as saying that Mabedi is on the list of patients who are expected to leave the country on October 28, having submitted all the required documents for himself, his guardian and donor.
But in an interview yesterday, Mabedi said since he submitted the documents to the ministry, he is yet to get formal communication to confirm whether his trip to India is on this Sunday.
“I did what I was asked to do and now all the passports and the visas are with the ministry. I am just waiting to hear from the ministry if indeed I will leave on Sunday as planned. I remain hopeful that the communication will come through to enable us leave,” he said.
Government through the ministry stepped in after the actor, with the help of a group of well-wishers identifying themselves as Friends of Mabedi, sounded an SOS to help the actor raise K20 million to enable him travel to India.
Spokesperson for Friends of Mabedi, Higger Mkandawire, also said as a group they remain optimistic that everything will fall in place and that the actor will travel to India to get the treatment.
He said; “Since we have not received any word suggesting the contrary from the initial arrangement, we are sticking with the commitment they made. As a group we are patiently waiting and we remain grateful to the government for its intervention.”
Mkandawire also said since government expressed its willingness to help Mabedi, as a group they suspended all their fundraising drive so as not to create suspicion among the citizenry and left all the responsibility to government.
MoH spokesperson Malango said the ministry submitted all the paper work concerning Mabedi to the relevant hospital authorities in India and are still waiting for a response hence the inactivity.
Mabedi is one of the directors of one of the oldest drama groups in the country Kwathu Drama Group, and is also the current president for the National Theatre Association of Malawi (Ntam). He was recently appointed board chairperson of the Copyright Society of Malawi (Cosoma). n