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Suicide by Sniper insecticide: Who is to blame?

The Sniper seems to have become the handiest chemical used by suicide victims to terminate their lives. The Sniper is a very popular brand of insecticide in Nigeria.

It belongs to the DDVP chemical family, (dichlorvos) 2, 2-dichlorovinyl dimethyl phosphate compound and is adjudged by many as being potent in killing insects such as mosquitoes, cockroaches and other insects.

However, like many other numerous chemicals, the Sniper is very harmful, especially when in contact with human digestive system. But tossed around by, perhaps, depression and other life challenges, most youths have gone the way of using the Sniper insecticide to end their lives.

A recent case is that of a 400-level student of the Department of English and Literary Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), identified as Chukwuemeka Akachi who, on Monday, allegedly committed suicide, using the Sniper.

Mr. Ebere Amaraizu, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in Enugu state who had confirmed the incident to newsmen on Tuesday, had described it as “pathetic and unfortunate.” And how did he die? An eyewitness account said Akachi went to an uncompleted building on Sullivan Road, Nsukka, where he drank two bottles of Sniper.

In 2017, a student of University of Lagos, identified as Ariyibi Ayomide, a student of the Faculty of Business Administration, Department of Employee Relations and Human Resources Management (ER & HRM) took her own life after her room mates booed her for stealing make up and clothes. Another case was that of a a 300-level student of Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, identified as Omolola, who also took her life on Wednesday, December 26, 2018 because of a disagreement with her parents. She had equally taken the handy chemical, Sniper, while in her apartment in Samaru campus of the university.

In Yenagoa, Bayelsa state, a 32-year-old man, in July 2015, committed suicide after drinking Sniper. He drank the poison after he learned that his wife was having an extra-marital affair at Ikolo in Yenagoa Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.

Another was the case at Alhaji Ede Avenue in Igando area of Lagos, where a 19-year-old lady, Uche Obiora, allegedly committed suicide by drinking sniper following a quarrel with her lover.

As the number of suicide victims by Sniper keep increasing, some Nigerians have taken to the micro-blogging site, Twitter to call for the ban of the chemical.

Although, this call is not without oppositions as those who opposed the call for the ban argued that the Sniper is not to be blamed. Below are tweets of the argument on whether or not the Sniper should be banned.

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