Nairobi News


Could Man U defeat have pushed man to his death?

Another defeat for Manchester United was the tipping point that drove a young man to suicide, neighbours believe.

They say 23-year-old John Macharia leapt to his death from the seventh floor of an apartment building after bottling up a number of unknown worries.

But United’s second home loss in a week — this time to a goal from Newcastle — was the final straw.

Macharia had shown some sign of stress earlier in the day and had been very emotional, according to his cousin Rose Wangare.

“He said he was stressed but did not expound on the exact issue bothering him. But we did not know it was that bad, he was very reserved when it comes to his problems,” said Rose who spoke to Macharia before leaving for her Kiambu home.

Macharia, who was jobless, spent most of the day in his house at Pipeline and left only to accompany his cousin to the stage.

Social person

Shocked neighbours talked fondly of the young who they said was a teetotaller and a very sociable person who interacted easily with everyone.

“I could not believe that Macharia actually jumped,” said Catherine Wangare, pictured, a neighbour and friend.

She went on: “We had been with him in the morning, chatted and all seemed OK. I am really sad that it had to end this way for such a young boy.”

Most of his neighbours presumed that United’s second defeat — they had also lost 1-0 at home to Everton earlier in the week — was the cause of Macharia’s frustrations boiling over.

However, his cousin and roommate Jeremiah Gakobo said that in spite of Macharia being an ardent United fan, he did not believe the loss contributed to his cousin’s death.

“I don’t think he killed himself because of the match, he was a very jovial boy and anyone would have loved to be his friend,” said Gakobo.

Macharia jumped from the rooftop of the seven-floor apartment building around 6pm on Saturday and died on the spot.

“I just heard a loud thud and at first I thought someone had been shot, only to realise that the boy had jumped from the building,” said Josphat Mulei who prepares chapatis a few metres from where Macharia landed.