World Suicide Day: Medical Expert bemoans punishing victims of fails suicide

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By: Joy Odor/Kaduna

As Kaduna State joins its counterpart in celebrating World Suicide Day Prevention globally, the Head of Medical Service (HMS), Psychiatric Hospital, Barnawa, Kaduna, Dr. Tajjudeen Abiola has bemoans against punishing, criminalizing and panelizing victims of failed suicide by the State and Federal Government, saying it is not a good decision in helping the victims.

Dr. Tajjudeen Abiola who stated this to reportcircle correspondent in an interview to commemorate the World Suicide Prevention Day 2018 with the theme “Working Together to Prevent Suicide”, celebrated every 10th of September, every year in Kaduna, North-West, Nigeria on 10th of September, 2018 was of the opinion that rather than sending the victim to jail, governments need to send them to hospital for counseling and treatment.

According to him, globally, figure has shown that 9-to-15 of every 100 Nigerians commits suicide on yearly basis which mean Kaduna will have a larger share in suicide cases of under-reported, pointing out that how many its citizens will the government put in jail for suicide attempt.

He lamented that, ethically, government at all levels should help suicide victims by reversing the law so that they can get the right help needed and hoped that through media campaign, government will hear their outcry and look into the laws that suicide is no longer stigmatized, criminalized or penalized.

The Head of Medical Service maintained that the role of the government is to employ more professionals to offer more service to the victims of suicide rather than criminalized, published or imprison as a result of failed suicide.

According to him, it has been showed that suicide is the second leading cause of death globally and government should make it a policies to see that any individual going through suicide should get help.

“Nigeria needs to do everything in its capacity to preserved life, cushion the suffering of the people and improve security in the country. Globally, figure has shown that 9-to-15 of every 100 Nigerians commits suicide on yearly basis which means Kaduna State larger share in suicide.

“It is something that contributes why a lot of people die. It is a big concerned, that is why we need to celebrate the Day so that people can be aware, informed and care for the people likely to commit suicide so that they can take the right step so that we will not continue to have high rate of suicide in the country.

“We are concerned as professionals that criminalizing failed suicide is not going to help because  it may pass wrong information that if you want to commit suicide, it is better you make sure that you succeed rather that letting the individual know that know that there are issues that triaged such action.

“Suicide is a major preventable cause of premature death which is influenced by psycho-social, cultural and environmental risk factors that can be prevented through worldwide responses that address these main risk factors. There is strong evidence indicating that adequate prevention can reduce suicide rates.

“This theme was chosen internationally as it highlights the most essential ingredient for effective global suicide prevention- collaboration. We all have a role to play and together we can collectively address the challenges presented by suicidal behaviour in society today.

“World Suicide Prevention Day is observed on September 10 each year to promote worldwide action to prevent suicides. Various events and activities are held during this occasion to raise awareness that suicide is a major preventable cause of premature death” he stressed.

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