Teenager Malala Yousafzai has undergone successful surgery at Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth hospital and is said to be making a good recovery. The multiple surgeries were intended to replace a damaged part of her cranium and to restore some degree of hearing in her left ear. It will take Malala some weeks to recover from the operation. The details given out by the hospital reveal both the gravity of Malala’s injuries and the degree of her luck.
The bullet that hit her in October last year as she travelled home from school did not penetrate her skull, and damage caused to it was from the force of the bullet and the vibrations this caused. Had good fortune not been with her, Malala could easily have been dead by now. The information given out about her wounds should help silence those who insist the case was faked, underscoring the courage of the 15-year-old girl.
Coinciding with her successful surgery was Malala’s first video appearance after her attack, released hours after the surgery. Said to be recorded a few days earlier, the video shows Malala thanking everyone for their prayers and reiterating her commitment to girls’ education. This courage and commitment alone makes Malala an excellent candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize, for which she has been nominated. Parliamentarians in several western countries have voted for her, paying tribute to her brave stand to promote education for girls.
Whether or not the prize eventually comes her way, Malala stands out as an example for all of us. We can only be relieved that she has recovered so well from all that she went through and hope that her inspiration will help others in the country and around the world, with her face now a well known global icon.