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Tuesday, January 17, 2023 – A Zimbabwean Form 6 school girl identified as Melody Chiputura, has reportedly died after she was bitten by a black mamba while in class.

The Herald newspaper reported that the 17-year-old student of Rushinga High School in Zimbabwe’s Mashonaland Central province, was bitten by the snake as she returned to class after going out for sports with her classmates.

Melody died within 30 minutes while being transported to a hospital. She has also been buried.

Melody’s father, Mr Joseph Chiputura, who serves as the councillor for Rushinga’s Ward 13 said;

“We received a call 10 minutes after she was bitten. When we arrived at the clinic it was too late. This is hard to accept and it is painful. I don’t understand how a snake can get into a classroom and bite my daughter.

“My daughter had great potential, and she loved going to school. She had great hopes pinned on education, and we had to make sure we provided everything she needed. She was doing History, Psychology and Religious Studies, and her dream was to become a psychologist.”

Rushinga High School head Mr Christopher Murenga also said;

“It was on Thursday and all learners went for sporting activities as per the school timetable. At around 3.50 pm the learners returned to their classroom as they prepared to leave for the day.

“She sat on her usual desk, the third desk to the wall, and two desks in front of her were occupied by her classmates. Immediately she screamed, saying something had bitten her. 

“The learners discovered the snake and everyone panicked with some jumping out through windows. Some of the boys took Melody outside and started calling for help.

“Her parents arrived within 20 minutes in the company of someone with traditional herbs.

“At the same time we contacted Chimhanda Hospital and the doctor advised us to bring Melody and the snake which had already been killed by learners.

“She died on the way to the hospital. We are in shock we don’t understand where this snake came from. The classroom block is far away from suspected snake habitats.”

The school’s head added that traumatized students are receiving counseling following the death of their classmate.

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