Wakiso, (UG): A 16-year-old Primary Seven vacist allegedly burnt himself to death last Friday after failing to score Aggregate 4 in the recently released results of the 2023 Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE).
The deceased identified as Abdurahim Rusiba, a resident of Kitende Sisa in Wakiso District set himself ablaze using petrol and died upon reaching Kiruddu National Referral Hospital where had been rushed for treatment.
Rusiba’s death comes in the wake of an audio recording that has since gone viral on social media with the woman in the audio claiming how his brother’s son burnt himself to death after he did not perform according to his expectations in the PLE results.
“That is my brother’s son…When the results came back, and he realised that he did not perform to his expectation, he went and wrapped himself in a blanket, poured petrol on himself before he headed to the bathroom and put himself on fire,” the woman who identified herself as the deceased’s aunt, said is heard in the audio.
“The neighbours tried to save him but it was a little late. He could have been going through trauma. He must have needed a lot of support and counselling but he had nowhere to offload his issues,” the woman adds.
Dr Edris Kalanzi, who heads the Burns and Reconstructive Surgery Unit at Kiruddu, said by the time Rusiba was brought to the facility for treatment, he had already burnt 90% of his skin and died shortly upon being examined by the doctors.
“He was brought to the hospital on Friday night and he was severely burnt… he passed on the following day at around 9 am. I think the major issue was the underlying mental health issue, which had both been diagnosed and addressed,” Dr Kalanzi said, adding that the teenager complained that he was not loved apart from only his brother who loved him.
Father rules out PLE Results as cause of suicide
Mr Musa Waligo speaking of his son’s death said the deceased had some time back told him about his intentions to commit suicide for not being loved by his peers and that they used to mock the way he used to talk.
“He suffered from a speech impairment when he was still young. So children could make fun of it. He was a very quiet boy. When he told me about committing suicide. I took him to his maternal grandmother for counselling but he did not change much.”
Mr Waligo added that his son’s death could have been triggered by a feeling of not being loved, and ruled out his performance in the PLE Results.
“By the time of his son’s death, he had not yet got information about his PLE results even though they were released last Thursday,” says Mr Waligo refuting the claims in the viral audio recording.
According to him, on the fateful day, his son did his usual chores including peeling matooke with his siblings. They then settled in the sitting room to watch television.
After some time, he got a five-litre jerrycan and returned home a few moments later with petrol. He then went to the outside bathroom where he set himself on fire.
“We were not around. It is our neighbours who came and rushed him to hospital,” Mr Waligo said.
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