The family and friends of a student of University of Lagos simply identified as Seun, who took his own life on Tuesday 19th January 2013 are still in shock over his death. Suicide among Nigerian youths is not a common occurrence. It is therefore disturbing to read the Punch report which claims that two undergraduate students of UNILAG have committed suicide in the last one month. The first one happened earlier in the year.
On New Year’s Eve, Damilola Durojaiye, a Computer Science student of the university, also allegedly committed suicide at his parents’ Akute-Ajuwon, Ogun State home. The 19-year-old was said to be a brilliant student with a cumulative grade point average of about 3.9. He reportedly stayed at home when his parents went for the cross-over service, only for them to come back and see his body dangling from where he hanged himself. The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Mr. Muyiwa Adejobi, said at the time that a suicide note was found where Durojaiye hung himself .
The circumstances surrounding Seun’s death is also quite mysterious. He lived with his aunt in Mafoluku, Lagos, where the incident was said to have occurred. When Punch visited his family, Seun’s aunt was still in shock.
“Please, I cannot say anything because this is a big tragedy for us,” she was quoted as saying.
However, some neighbours spoke about his character and the events of the day he died.
“I knew he was a student. I just did not know he attended UNILAG. He was an easy going and quiet man. We probably would have been close if he was not the quiet type. The day of the incident, I just got home from an errand and I was told Seun had been rushed to a hospital. When I asked what happened, I was told he went out to buy a substance and locked himself inside his room.
“I still don’t know what happened to make him take that action. I think those in the house when he went to buy the substance must have suspected he was going to do something drastic because they later forced the door open, but he had already ingested the substance he went to buy. They quickly took him to the hospital,” a young woman told Punch. It was learnt that Seun died later that evening in the hospital.
Another resident in the area described him as “a very quiet young man of about 27 years old.”
Unlike Damilola who left a suicide note, Seun’s suicide remains shrouded in mystery as it may never be known what drove him to commit suicide. Moreso, the police have said no report was made about it as the Public Relations Officer of the Airport Police Command, Lagos, Dennis Ifijen told Punch that they have no record of the case.