22 February 2013

Tanzania: Poor Form IV Results Claim Another Life

Bukoba — ANOTHER student committed suicide due to dismal performance in last year's national Form Four examinations, bringing the number of candidates who have taken their lives to three thus far.

The incident this time occurred in Karagwe district where a student identified as Atus Geofrey (20) who completed Form Four at St Sosthenes Secondary School last year, allegedly committed suicide by swallowing a poisonous substance. Similar incidents are reported to have occurred in Tabora municipality, in Tabora region and Temeke district, in Dar es Salaam region.

The mother of the deceased, Ms Winifrida Geoffrey (48), said that his son received the results via text message on February 18 that he had scored Division Four with 30 points. Atus was shocked by the results and asked his mother to go out and run an errand but later that night his parents could hear him snoring heavily in a room that was locked from within. When they unlocked the room they found him in pain.

Ms Geoffrey said that Atus died when he was being rushed to Nyakahanga district hospital the same night. Kagera Regional Police Commander (RPC), Mr Philip Kalangi confirmed the incident, adding that investigations were in progress to determine the cause of death.

Tabora Regional Police Commander (RPC), Mr Anthony Ruta, told reporters on Wednesday that a student at Kanyenye Secondary School in Tabora municipality committed suicide on Monday evening after getting his Form Four results.

According to Mr Ruta, the late Michael Fidelis (19) got results indicating he had failed the exams and left a note saying "forgive me mother, I love you dearly but don't look for scapegoats. The decision is due to the poor results in my exams".

Temeke Regional Police Commander, Mr Engelbert Kiondo, has also said a student at Debrant Secondary School identified as Barnabas Venant (18) also committed suicide by hanging himself on a tree using a sisal rope.

Announcing the results last Monday, the Minister for Education and Vocational Training, Dr Shukuru Kawambwa, said a total of 367,750 candidates attempted the 2012 Form Four exams and over 60 per cent of them failed.

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