Oukwanyama queen awards Dr Helena Ndume

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Nuusita Ashipala

Omhedi-The Oukwanyama Queen Martha Mwadinomho ya Kristian Nelumbu bestowed an accolade on Namibian renowned ophthalmologist Dr Helena Ndume. The award adds to Ndume’s collection of accolades received both at home and internationally for recognition of her hard work in restoring the sight of over 35,000 Namibians across the country.

Ndume, the miracle doctor as she is popularly known, received the award from the Queen of Oukwanyama at Omhedi Palace on Saturday.

The award is to honour Ndume for her selfless dedication and appreciation for the work she continues to do. The emotional Ndume in her acceptance speech said the award is not hers alone.

“The award that has been bestowed upon me is for everyone who has been involved in the campaign, the cooks who made sure I was fed, the driver and the nurses who pass me the equipment. You are all instrumental in this campaign,” said Ndume.

Ndume also applauded the international doctors who for years have travelled to Namibia for the campaign. “These are very busy people, but they sacrifice to close their clinics, practices, pay for flight tickets, bring equipment and own medicine to use during the campaign,” said Ndume.

This year’s campaign kicked off yesterday at Engela District Hospital. While describing her passion to restore sight, Ndume said is indebted to Namibians whose sacrifices ensured she was well schooled during her time in exile.
Queen Nelumbu, in a speech read on her behalf by Priskila Kandume, said the award is a token of appreciation.
“I would like to hand this award to you, to serve as a reminder of how we value and appreciate your good deeds,” said the queen. One of the doctors who have been coming to Namibia since the inception of the eye campaign in 1997, Michael Colvard, said Ndume’s greatest gift is to inspire all kind-hearted people and through her charisma she is able to attract about 100 people to work for a common good.
Colvard said as they celebrate the past – having restored sight to 35,000 people – they look forward to the future and shall continue to inspire until the days when blindness is still seen as part of ageing are long gone.

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