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Grief as Best 2020 PLE pupil dies hours after results release, witchcraft suspected

The casket containing the remains of Elvis Rwothomio, 13, who died on Saturday after emerging as the best PLE pupil in Pakwach District. PHOTO | FELIX WAROM OKELLO (DM)

NATIONAL: Elvis Rwothomio, who emerged as the best pupil in Pakwach district in the 2020 Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE) results, died hours after learning the news of his great performance.

Rwothomio, a former pupil at Pajobi Primary School who scored six aggregates in the just-released 2020 PLE results was on Saturday evening when he was declared dead after suffering from a short illness.

The deceased had been a resident of Kakawoi A Village in Pakwach Town Council.

Some of the family members said at the time the results were released, Rwothomio had been bedridden for a week.

Ms. Juliet Aciro the deceased’s mother says her son stepped on some strange fetishes in front of their house while removing a motorcycle.

Aciro who raised Rwothomio single-handedly following his father’s death when he was still a toddler says her son then started complaining of pain in the leg and swelling in the stomach.

“It is sad that Elvis died after a long struggle with him. We tried treating him with the herbalists in Panyigoro and Pacego but all in vain. The condition worsened on Saturday and we lost him,” she said.

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“He was our hope as a family and we have all along struggled hard to pay his school fees, provide everything because he was a bright boy. God, why? Ohh my son…” a sobbing Aciro said.

According to his teachers who delivered the good news to him after the release of the results, the bedridden Rwothomio was full of smiles and joy as he hugged them amidst the pain he was undergoing.

The school’s deputy headteacher, Mr. Patrick Ayima, described the late Rwothomio as a hardworking and disciplined pupil in whom they had great hopes.

“It is unfortunate that we cannot celebrate the great performance of Rwothomio whom we have lost. This is a big loss to the entire school and the family that had high hopes in him,” he said.

“We shared the result with him on Friday afternoon and he was so happy as his condition seemed better. It is so shocking that he died before achieving his dreams. His death has depressed the pupils and teachers,” he added.

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Caesar Yikparwoth, a close friend of the deceased, who also obtained six aggregates said: “I can’t believe my friend whom I was competing within academics is gone. I am puzzled.”

The District Inspector of School, Mr. Maxwell Atiya, asked parents and guardians to desist from trusting herbalists and instead deal with qualified medical doctors.

“We are saddened by the circumstance surrounding the death of our district’s best PLE pupil. Whenever such sicknesses arise, let that person be treated in designated health centers so that the cause of the death can be traced and solution offered timely,” he said.

No postmortem was done to establish the exact cause of Rwothomio’s death.

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