But his death has not shocked some students close to him, saying it was something pre-planned because he had been talking about taking his life.
A day before his death, Nyirenda, an Environmental Health student, updated his status on Facebook saying: “So long everyone…till we meet again…loved you all.”
Deputy police spokesperson Rae Hamoonga confirmed Nyirenda’s death to the media in a statement, Tuesday.
And Evelyn Hone College Students’ Union president Bruno Sitanzye told News Diggers! in an interview that the deceased seemed to have family problems.
“The guy decided to take his own life. I think personal problems with his family. He has been talking about wanting to kill himself. We tried to counsel him and even called his sister and the sister was like ‘you can kill yourself, tukashita cabbage na kapenta pachililo (we will buy cabbage and kapenta at your funeral). Ngaulefwaya ufwe fye (if you want, just die)’. It was more like a planned death. So, in the morning as we were trying to chase a thief, we discovered him dead. Anyway, chachitukalipa (it hurt us). He had blood coming out of his mouth and some white stuff from his nose,” Sitanzye narrated.
He explained that Nyirenda was ‘expelled’ at the University of Zambia (UNZA) where he was a student before enrolling at Evelyn Hone College.
“I think he drank poison. We just found him lying down near Tanzania Hostel. So, we don’t know whether he threw himself from the building, but all we know is that he killed himself. There were no physical injuries on his body apart from the blood and some white stuff on his mouth and nose,” Sitanzye said.
“He was a first-year student in Environmental Health. He was supposed to complete this year at UNZA, but he was expelled and he came here. Here, he failed in one subject, blew up his school fees. He used to be called ‘Young Dangote’ because when he does his Chimwemwe (excitement) dance, everyone would clap. He never even had mental issues. He used to be a jovial guy, but drinking beer and smoking used to be his usual thing. But the mother is well to do. She is in America; they have got money. And so we wouldn’t say it was because of (lack of) money, no.”
Other students talked to, especially those he used to drink beer with, explained that the deceased was devastated after his father disowned him when he failed exams at UNZA.
“Bawishi bekala ku Kafue (his father lives in Kafue) elo banyina baba ku America (and his mother lives in America). Banyina balemutumina ifipiya sometimes nangu ten pin (his mother used to send him money sometimes like K10,000). Nomba bawishi balimukana olo aponene ku UNZA (his father disowned him after he failed exams at UNZA). Nomba ine bakamba teti njipaye nangu bankana shani abafyashi (but guys, I can’t take my life even if my parents deny me). Twalenwa bonse pa Sunday elo mambala alikolelwe sana no kwisa ponena pa botolo ilyabwalwa (we were drinking together on Sunday to an extent that he fell on a bottle of beer),” said one his friends.
And his Facebook followers expressed mixed reactions to his death announcement post with others criticizing him, while others sympathized and suspected that he might have been murdered.
Last month, a Komboni Radion DJ named Kasonde, a.k.a DJ Apple Bite, also predicted her death in a cryptic message by saying that she would die today (September 11, 2019).
“By 11 September, you will call 0975931303 and I will be off or my sister will answer saying she’s no more (dead). Don’t cry. Within two weeks, I’m gone. 11 September, 2019. In these my last days, I need to be a bit happy. If nothing is done from family and friends, you will be gathering at a graveyard,” posted Kasonde.