Dr Alfa Saadu, 68, died on Tuesday morning after battling the viral disease for two weeks. His son Dani paid tribute to the doctor who had spent 40 years working in medicine in the UK and in his native Nigeria before retiring in 2017. He told ITV News his father had not been working on the NHS frontlines against coronavirus in recent weeks.
Dani posted on Facebook: “He had been fighting the virus for two weeks but he could not fight any more.
“The NHS were amazing and did everything they could. My dad was a living legend, worked for the NHS for 40 years saving people’s lives here and in Africa.
“Up until he got sick, he was still working part-time saving people.
“The coronavirus is not a joke, please take it seriously and listen to the Government.
“Please stay safe and protect your loved ones, nothing is more important.”
Born in Nigeria, the doctor had spent the past three years working part-time at the Queen Victoria Memorial Hospital in Welwyn, Hertfordshire.
The Chief Executive at Princess Alexandra Hospital, Lance McCarthy, issued a statement praising Dr Saadu and said former colleagues would hold fond memories of him.
Mr McCarthy said Dr Saadu will be “remembered fondly by many.”
Dr Saadu, who wife is also a doctor, was 12 years old when he moved to the UK.
A man who said he is a nephew of the deceased doctor appealed to people to wake up to the reality of the crisis.
Ahmadu Galadima said: “Today, March 31 2020, I lost an uncle – Dr Alfa Saadu (Galadiman Pategi) to COVID-19 in the UK.
“A retired volunteer medical doctor that contracted the virus trying to save lives.
“This thing is not a joke. Please stay home and stay safe.
“May Allah have mercy on his soul. Amin.”
The former president of the Nigerian senate, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki, paid tribute to Dr Saadu on Twitter.
He said the doctor would be “sorely missed” by all who knew him.
Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan called Dr Saadu a “hero”.
He said: “What an absolute hero. RIP.”
Dr Saadu is the fourth doctor to die in Britain after contracting coronavirus.
Published at Wed, 01 Apr 2020 14:55:00 +0000