Kenya: Patrick Hinga Succumbed to Stomach Complications

BEFORE AND AFTER: Former street urchin Patrick Hinga who was rescued from street life by his childhood friend Wanja Mwaura.

Former destitute drug addict Patrick Hinga, whose rescue and transformation by a former schoolmate became an internet sensation, succumbed to stomach complications.

Quoting Hinga's mother, Ms Wanja Mwaura, a childhood friend who helped him climb out of the drug abuse abyss, on Monday said he died in hospital.

"According to the mother, Hinga was doing fine and he did his best to remain the man we all helped him to be," Ms Mwaura posted on Facebook, where she uses the name Faith Nganga.

She said the stomach illness started on Thursday, March 14.

"Hinga left home and went to visit his friends in Kayole, upon reaching there he called his mom and complained of a stomach ache though not serious, he spent the night there and said he will be ok," she posted.

CONFUSED

"On Saturday late night the problem persisted n that's when he decided to go to the hospital but by the time the mother got to him early morning yesterday (Sunday), he had already passed on."

She appealed to Kenyans to help the family accord their son a dignified send-off.

"I feel confused n lost and I don't know what to say or think or even where to start... I need you more than ever before for this one last time."

Hinga's recovery became an internet hit after it was captured and shared step by step on social media by Ms Mwaura.

Born on September 15, 1983, he attended Ndararua Primary School in Kabete and sat his KCPE exams in 1998 where he scored 447 marks out of 700.

He was admitted to Uthiru High School, then a provincial school, in 1999.

DRUGS

Hinga's involvement with drugs started when he was in Standard Eight when his friends introduced him to the lifestyle.

"It all began with cigarettes," he says.

"Before we knew it, we were smoking bhang. I gave in to drugs because of peer pressure," he told the Nation in an earlier interview.

Hinga and his friends would sneak to the toilets to smoke cigarettes and bhang.

When his teachers discovered that Hinga was doing drugs, he was immediately expelled. He was in Form Two.

This was the beginning of a downward spiral towards the path of self-ruin that would see him hit the streets.

After being expelled from Uthiru, he was enrolled at Elite High School in Kayole where he dropped out due to drug use.

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