Abubakar's Story


I was cured, but lost many friends who were afraid that I might infect them with leprosy.

Abubakar Mohammed lives in Dakwa community in Abuja, Nigeria. He had leprosy in his youth but because he didn’t know what it was, he only resorted to herbal treatments. As time went on, the disease got worse.  Community members told him it was leprosy and Abubakar was taken to the hospital by his brother where he was diagnosed and treated. "I was cured," he says "but lost many friends who were afraid that I might infect them with leprosy."

Although cured, Abubakar developed serious ulcers on his foot, preventing him from engaging in his usual occupation of farming or moving around to seek another means of livelihood for his family. He and his family also experienced stigma. People would not buy from his wife – they would call her ‘Mata Kutari’ which is Hausa meaning ‘wife of leper’ and his two children, Nana and Yusufa, had no education because Abubakar’s ulcer prevented him from earning the money needed for their school fees.

Things started to turn around when Abubakar became a member of a self-care group formed by TLM Nigeria and began to receive treatment and care for his ulcer. Now the ulcer is completely healed and Abubakar can walk and work on his farm to earn income and take care of his family. He believes that health is wealth and he is very pleased that TLM Nigeria has given him his health back. He wants to farm on a large scale to be able to send his children to school and take care of his family. Abubakar’s eldest child, Nana Fidausi, hopes to become a doctor someday.