|Prof. Oladapo Ashiru|
Our IVF programme in College of Medicine University of Lagos/LUTH was verified and confirmed by two separate ministerial panels constituted by the Federal Government. The health ministers were Dr. Emmanuel Nsan and Prof. Olikoye Ransome-Kuti. The two panels were headed by Prof. T. Adesanya Ige Grillo and Prof. Adeleye from UCH.
The mother of the baby was monitored during her antenatal in LUTH; and she brought the baby to LUTH after delivery, and granted interview to two independent journalists, Mr. Onajomo Ohrere of The Guardian newspaper and Ms. Luisa Aguyi-Ironsi of Tell magazine, both of whom did extensive reporting of our success in 1989. LUTH also published a special edition of its magazine to celebrate the success.
Our work and success have been published in scientific journals and presented at different local and international conferences.
In 1992, Bob Edwards endorsed our membership to the International Federation of Fertility Societies, based on this success.
The fact that Dr. Ibrahim Wada might be in medical school at this time does not excuse this great omission of history that had been recognized and accepted world wide.
In 1989, there was no Ministry of Science and Technology in Nigeria; so, we could not have asked them to verify our success.
Besides, the acceptable practice for announcing success of IVF globally is through the scientific forum and then the health ministry of the country. This we had done. Several other babies have been born in Nigeria and worldwide through IVF, but the land of delivery is not necessarily the land of conception – as was our case.
I advise Dr. Ibrahim Wada to claim his rightful position as the one who produced the first IVF baby in Northern Nigeria if he so desires the use of the word ‘first.’