27 Mar 2019

Nauru govt says it didn't delay Dabwido treatment

11:16 am on 27 March 2019

The Nauru government is taking issue with reports it caused delays in Sprent Dabwido's cancer treatment.

Former Nauru president Sprent Dabwido

Former Nauru president Sprent Dabwido Photo: supplied

The former president has said in recent days that his cancer is terminal.

He is receiving treatment in Australia where he has also applied for political asylum.

Mr Dabwido had said his efforts to get treatment overseas under the government's medical referral process were held up for several months and eventually he paid his own way.

But the government said some of the media reports had contained misinformation and amount to attacks on it.

It said when Mr Dabwido was diagnosed in May 2018 at the Republic of Nauru hospital he was immediately accepted for fully funded overseas treatment.

But sources in Nauru have told RNZ Pacific that Mr Dabwido then faced months of delays with the government deliberately frustrating the process, because Mr Dabwido was one of the so-called Nauru 19, which at that stage was facing charges over an anti-government protest several years earlier.

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