Thousands of medical students from all countries, India, South Africa, the Philippines, Nigeria to name just a few were left in distress after the war between Russia and Ukraine started. Ntakeko Muyingane (24), from Tzaneen in Limpopo, from South Africa, moved to Kharkiv in Ukraine to pursue his medical studies in 2017. Muyingane told the local newspaper that “I never thought that will be caught in between these two countries in my fifth year of study. My greatest fear was that I might not see my family again. Me and my fellow South African medical students Charmaine Mnisi, Khurhulah Moswana and Vutlhari Motonga were in the city for a week.
After the South African embassy in Ukraine failed to help me my parents, who are public officials managed to purchase an airline ticket for me to come home”. Another student, Vukile Dlamini, a female first-year medical student from South Africa in Phalaborwa said’’ it was hard for us to leave the country. After leaving our place of domain border where thousands of people were trying to cross over which took us almost eight hours to cross the border”. When we heard about the war for the first time, we were scared but the teachers tried to calm us down and told us nothing big is going to happen.The Indians were in contact with their embassy, the embassy asked if they could be released”.
The South African ambassador to Ukraine, Andre Groenewald, has been in contact with the students, asking for their contacts and details to arrange polish visas for them. The Gift of the Givers is set to intervene in the Ukrainian crisis by funding the repatriation of SA students and providing emergency medical relief to front-line facilities. The intervention will be in two ways first to provide emergency medical and non-medical assistance to front lines facilities internally.
Muyingane told the publication that he is not sure if he wants to return or finish his education at home, at the moment, while Dlamini said ‘’she wants to return to Ukraine once everything is settled, I will continue to pray for Ukraine and safety of the people”. About 50 students from South African students have arrived in the country from last week.
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