BULAWAYO – A Form 4 pupil at a Bulawayo school committed suicide after discovering that she was pregnant, police said.
The 17-year-old Magwegwe Secondary School pupil named only as Nokuzola is believed to have killed herself by drinking an insecticide hours after her mother excoriated her for “playing with boys” and neglecting her schoolwork.
The mother did not know at the time that her daughter is pregnant.
“Police are investigating a case of sudden death which occurred in Magwegwe suburb. The mother of the late reprimanded her on Monday evening not to play with boys as she might get pregnant while urging her to concentrate on her school work,” Inspector Abednico Ncube of Bulawayo police said.
He said the mother left home in the morning on Tuesday for her vending business leaving her daughter with their 19-year-old housekeeper.
Inspector Ncube explained: “On the same day at around 10AM, the now deceased ordered the maid to go and bath. The maid went to bath leaving the now deceased in the bedroom alone. When the maid came back from bathing she found the now deceased lying on the floor in her mother’s bedroom vomiting. The maid informed a neighbour who summoned an ambulance.”
The ambulance crew pronounced her dead on arrival and police were called.
“The police found the deceased lying on the floor in the bedroom next to a bed with vomit on the floor. An empty 100ml bottle of Dichlorvos insecticide with a purple triangle was found on top of the wardrobe. We suspect the late pupil drank the contests of the bottle,” Inspector Ncube said.
A female friend of Nokuzola told police that “she tested herself for pregnancy and confirmed that she was pregnant.”
“She also told police that the deceased had made threats to commit suicide if anyone disclosed the pregnancy to her parents,” according to Inspector Ncube.
Her body was taken to Mpilo Central Hospital for a post-mortem.
Police urged members of the public to keep dangerous chemicals like pesticides away from the reach of children.
“We also appeal to our children and youths to take heed of their parents’ counsel and desist from engaging in early sexual experiments. Young lives are unnecessarily lost due to wayward behaviour of some youths and social ills,” he said.
The parliamentary portfolio committee on primary and secondary education his week heard that a number of school girls at Bulawayo schools had fallen pregnant during the lengthy school closure caused by the Covid-19 lockdown.