UPDATED: Boys stumble on ‘suicide’ teacher’s hanging body

Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter

A TEACHER from Magwegwe North suburb in Bulawayo was found hanging from a tree in a suspected case of suicide.

It is not clear why Ntabiso Sibanda (54), a teacher at Sabelo Primary School in Inyathi, Bubi District of Matabeleland North could have killed himself, on Saturday afternoon.

Two boys who were searching for firewood near Magwegwe Sewerage Treatment plant discovered his lifeless body hanging from the tree. 

Chronicle visited his family at his Magwegwe North home on Monday where mourners are gathered.

His younger brother, Mr Bonisani Sibanda, said the family was in the dark as to why he could have committed suicide and are looking for answers.

“He was an out of home teacher as you might be aware. He was not always around for us to assess if he was facing any problems. But when he was around us, we didn’t note anything amiss with him. We are also searching for answers as we are in the dark on what could have led him to end his life,” he said.

Bulawayo police spokesperson Inspector Abednico Ncube said investigations into Sibanda’s death were underway.

“We received a sudden death case where a 54-year-old man was found hanging from a tree in a bush in Magwegwe North suburb. The deceased is a teacher at Sabelo Primary school in Inyathi. He was found by two boys who were out looking for firewood. The boys informed elders before the matter was reported to the police who retrieved his body,” said Insp Ncube.

He said Sibanda’s body was taken to the United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) for post- mortem.

Insp Ncube urged residents to seek counselling if they are facing challenges, instead of ending their lives.

“It’s unfortunate that a life has been lost. We strongly appeal to members of the public who might be going through personal issues to consult and seek counselling services to solve some of their problems. Ending one’s life is not a solution,” said Insp Ncube.

Matabeleland North acting Provincial Education Director Mr Jabulani Mpofu said he was not informed of Sibanda’s death.

“I haven’t received any communication regarding this. I will make a follow-up on the issue. But since this did not happen at our school, information may take time to reach us,” said Mr Mpofu.

The 2019 Friendship Bench Services, African Mental Health Research Initiative report (AMARI) revealed recently that more than 100 000 Zimbabweans suffering from depression and anxiety sought health care last year.

Depression is said to be one of the major causes of suicide. – @nqotshili

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