By Nwabueze Akabogu
THE recent unfortunate incident involving a team of twelve young football players and their coach in Thailand, a major agricultural Nation in South East Asia, when they got trapped inside a Thai cave while in excursion, caught the attention of the entire world even as the authorities in Thailand were continually kept on their toes on how best to salvage the extremely dangerous situation.
The youngsters and their coach, according to media report, accidentally slipped into the flooded cave where they eventually ended up at a particular point of about two miles (about 6 kilometers) inside the cave. For more than two weeks, the lads and their coach were completely cut off from the outside world without food or water.
Thai authorities, on receiving the report of the missing boys and their coach immediately swung into action and launched a rescue mission comprising of expert divers, medical personnel, as well as security operatives, aimed at locating the missing teenage boys and their coach. International collaborative efforts were quickly mobilized and deployed to assist the Thai authorities in their rescue operation.
As soon as the experts were able to establish contact with the missing football team inside the cave, divers immediately swung into action and oxygen, food and water were promptly delivered to the boys using special rope to reach them in the cave.
Having established that the missing boys were still alive inside the cave after more than two weeks of terrible ordeal, the next stage then was how to carry out a successful rescue operation which was obviously a herculean task as time was of great essence in view of the impending over flooding of the cave, thereby putting the lives of the boys and their coach in greater danger.
Consequently, the expert divers swung into action and as fate would have it, by Sunday, 8th July, 2018, a group of four boys were successfully rescued alive and quickly followed by another group of four boys who were also rescued on Monday, 9th July, 2018.
And by Tuesday, 10th July, 2018, the remaining groups of four boys, along with their coach were finally rescued alive in what could be described as one of the most dramatic and incredible operations ever carried out in living memory. By sheer human ingenuity and dexterity, the seemingly impossible task was ultimately accomplished and to the admiration of the entire global community.
As at press time, the divers had already completed the rescue operation but regrettably, it was reported that one of the divers lost his life during the operation. By this remarkable and rather miraculous achievement, the Thais would certainly beat their chest with pride for having demonstrated to the entire world extraordinary courage, resilience and tenacity, as well as the highest sense of patriotism which the global community should emulate.
The collaborative efforts by the global community had clearly demonstrated the uncommon spirit of solidarity and humanity with the Thais during the period of unimaginable distress, agony and uncertainty. Indeed, it was a rare moment of unity and cooperation by all nations of the world who had shared the pains and tribulations with the people of Thailand as an eloquent testimony that after all said and done, the entire global community belongs to one common humanity irrespective of race, colour or creed.
In the meantime however, the rescued boys and their coach had already been air lifted to Bangkok, the nation’s capital, where they are currently undergoing intensive medical checks to ascertain their health status, even as they had naturally suffered severe dehydration and malnutrition during their unfortunate ordeal in the cave.
The recent Thailand experience should therefore, serve as a great lesson for the developing world, particularly the people of Africa to imbibe the virtue of saving human lives rather than destroying them as it is the current situation whereby the continent is presently engulfed in senseless civil wars and communal unrests in virtually all the nations in Africa, with the grave consequences of the loss of thousands of precious human lives almost on a daily basis.