01/22/13 - Namibian - Iyambo hospitalised in Cuba
By: DENVER KISTING
Education Minister Abraham Iyambo
BARELY six months after he returned to work following extended sick leave,
Education Minister Abraham Iyambo is back in hospital.
Although senior government officials and spokespeople remained
tight-lipped yesterday, it is understood that Iyambo is receiving
treatment in Cuba.
It is unclear what he is being treated for. Some sources said that he had
undergone an operation.
David Namwandi, the deputy minister of education, confirmed that Iyambo
was in Cuba "on government business", but said he was not aware that he
was in hospital.
Upon enquiry, education permanent secretary Alfred Ilukena said to his
knowledge, Iyambo was not in hospital.
Contradicting Namwandi, he said: "He decided to use his annual leave to
visit his friends in Cuba. He should be here by Wednesday. I don't know
anything about hospital."
Ilukena could not say for how long Iyambo has been in Cuba. "He didn't go
to Cuba because he is sick. It's a private visit," he maintained.
According to one source, Iyambo collapsed at the airport when he wanted to
return to Namibia.
Romeo Muyunda, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Education, yesterday
also confirmed that Iyambo was in Cuba - apparently on annual leave.
However, he denied any knowledge of Iyambo being hospitalised. "He's not
in hospital. If he is, I have not received that information."
The minister of presidential affairs, Albert Kawana, said: "Maybe the
president knows. It's news to me."
As far as he knows, Iyambo is on annual leave, Kawana said.
Mukwaita Shanyenganga, the special media advisor to Presdident Pohamba,
also denied any knowledge. "Is he being hospitalised? It's news to me."
In July last year, Iyambo returned to work after having been on sick leave
for six months.
He then broke his silence about why he was absent from the office since
late 2011. Iyambo told officials in his ministry that high blood pressure
was the cause of his illness.
"My blood pressure went uncontrollably high and placed my body under
According to him, his hypertension skyrocketed to such an extent that his
vision, reading ability and speech were temporarily affected. "I am a
human like you with flesh, blood and bones. I'm not immune to sickness,
not immune to flu and not immune to headaches."
Although everyone's health is a private matter, the "outpour of concern"
and the fact that his ministry gets one of the biggest chunks of the
national budget made him clarify what was wrong with him - something which
forced him "into a moment of silence, pause and deep reflection".
He added that after adopting a healthy lifestyle, his doctors gave him a
clean bill of health. "I emerged stronger, healthier and more determined
to make a meaningful contribution to this beautiful country."
During his absence, he heard a number of rumours about his health - that
he was wheelchair-bound, paralysed, unable to speak, dying or dead, Iyambo
said. "Fortunately, none of these things are true or happened to me."
The minister thanked the media, saying: "You did what you could to inform
the public with the limited information you had."
Original Source / Fuente Original:
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