Saloum is being cared for by friends in a bedsit in Derby. Photograph: Fabio de Paola/The Guardian

A Gambian man who had been diagnosed with terminal cancer has been sent away from a British hospital because he was not eligible for free NHS care.

According to The Guardian Newspaper, Saloum, 54, who campaigned against female genital mutilation and has asked for his surname not to be used, fled the Gambia 10 years ago after risking his life by challenging the government for condoning the widespread use of FGM. Three-quarters of Gambian women aged 15-49 have undergone FGM.

After Saloum reached the UK he was subjected to labour exploitation and remained under the radar of the authorities until he collapsed on a Derby street on 27 December last year and was taken to Royal Derby hospital.