Don't give up: Popular Indonesian govt spokesman Sutopo tells cancer-stricken wife of ex-president Yudhoyono

Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho is being treated for stage 4 lung cancer and is undergoing his eighth chemotherapy session.
Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho is being treated for stage 4 lung cancer and is undergoing his eighth chemotherapy session.PHOTO: REUTERS

JAKARTA (JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a hero to many of his countrymen for working tirelessly despite battling terminal cancer, has released a get-well-soon video for former first lady Ani Yudhoyono as she undergoes treatment for leukaemia in Singapore.

"Ibu Ani, maybe I am a nobody to you. But as a cancer patient, I know how it hurts physically and mentally when the doctors diagnose us with cancer," Dr Sutopo said.

The 49-year-old became a media darling last year as he stoically disseminated official information and combated hoaxes during the country's frequent natural disasters while being treated for stage 4 lung cancer.

He is now undergoing his eighth chemotherapy session.

Mrs Yudhoyono, wife of former president Susilo "SBY" Bambang Yudhoyono, has been hospitalised at Singapore's National University Hospital since Feb 2 and was reported earlier this week to be in stable condition.

"The fact that Ibu Ani has blood cancer means that God loves you. God is testing our patience, power and faith so that we continuously pray, ask for mercy, (so that God) lifts our pain without leaving any other pain," Dr Sutopo said.

He said Mrs Yudhoyono had to use this opportunity to adopt a healthier lifestyle, as well as to keep thinking positively.

 
 

Dr Sutopo also had words of encouragement for Dr Yudhoyono.

"Pak SBY and family have to be patient in taking care of Ibu Ani. Family is the main source of spirit, especially for cancer patients," he said.