Confusion as 16-year-old OAU student allegedly commits suicide

Sodiq Oyeleke

Confusion has trailed the cause of an alleged suicide committed by a student of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Mercy Afolaranmi.

It was gathered that Afolaranmi, who is 16 years old, is currently in 100-level studying Micro-biology in the OAU.

It was learnt that the deceased killed herself on Thursday with a mixture of rat poison and battery extract.

While some members of the university community traced the cause of her committing suicide to poor grades, some friends of the deceased said she had no carryover.

It was learnt that Afolaranmi died in her hostel room which is located outside the university campus.

One of the deceased friends, identified as Gift, told our correspondent that the deceased could not have killed herself because of poor academic results.

“Yes, some of our first semester results have been released, but it is not about results. She did not have any carryover,” the friend insisted.

“It is difficult to know if she is going through challenges. She is a new student and there is a limit to how we can query one another’s mood. We must have mistaken her emotional depression for calmness,” one of the deceased neighbours added.

When contacted, the Public Relations Officer of the OAU, Mr. Biodun Olarewaju, explained that the cause of the death is yet to be ascertained.

He said efforts made to rescue the deceased proved abortive before the arrival of her parents.

Olarewaju, who mourned the deceased, said, “We have been informed about her death and our security team is carrying out an investigation on the matter already.

“For now, we cannot ascertain what the cause. We can only be sure of the cause of the death through an autopsy report.”

Announcing the death of the student on Saturday, the Nigerian Association of Microbiology Students, OAU chapter in a statement described Afolaranmi’s exit as tragic.

The statement, which was signed by PRO of the NAMS-OAU, Duduyemi Paul, and President, Odunola Kolawolu, was titled, ‘About her, the sixteen-year-old girl that died of poisoning.”

The statement read, “No one knows tomorrow is a saying that confirms the tragic death of a part-one student of our department (Microbiology).

“As at now, the main cause of the death can’t be confirmed. Then, this is just a confirmation that a part-one student with the name, Mercy Afolaranmi, is dead. The cause is not due to examination results as earlier assumed as she has no reported cases of failure in her academics.

“The case is currently being handled by the Police and we can only wait till the investigation is complete. We pray that death will never fall on us untimely! God grant the parents the grace to bear the loss and bless them in good measure.”

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