A 14-year-old boy, identified as Ashley Matsvaire has died while undergoing voluntary medical male circumcision at Triangle Hospital in Chiredzi, Zimbabwe on Tuesday, The Manica Post reports. The incident has caused outrage as the parents of the boy alleged that his death was as a result of staff negligence at the hospital. Mr Daniel Matsvaire, the boy’s father, said they had since requested an independent pathologist to ascertain the actual cause of his death. The angry parents had confronted the medical team who explained that Ashley’s death was internal secretion which resulted in water being leaked into his lungs.
His mother, Mrs Tendai Jamela, said her son was in a jovial mood when she escorted him to the hospital for circumcision around 6am. “There is an element of negligence on the part of the team involved because when he returned from the theatre, he was lifeless. I was called in to look at him, but his body was very cold. I asked Dr Ziki why he was lifeless, but he told me that he had injected him with another injection to stop the pain. I insisted again after some time as he remained in that state of unconsciousness and again the doctor told me not to worry,” said Mrs Jamela.
She said the boy was given an epileptic tablet and water as they prepared him for surgery. “Ashley was epileptic and they gave him some medication as they prepared him for theatre. They went on to inject him to cause him to sleep while they perform the process, but he never regained consciousness,” said Mrs Jamela, who said she never left the hospital premises and became suspicious when the process dragged for nearly two hours.
Mr Daniel Matsvaire, the boy’s father, said he met the hospital authorities late Wednesday afternoon where he was advised by one Dr Ziki that they had opted to inject the child due to his epileptic condition. “The doctor said the circumcision surgery was successful and at some point the boy showed signs of life, but became unconscious again. Their explanation was that he developed an internal secretion and released water into the lungs and died.
"We are requesting a second specialist opinion from an independent pathologist because their explanation does not add up. The news of his death came as a shock to us. Neither I nor his mother can believe it,” said Mr Matsvaire
Masvingo police spokesperson, Inspector Charity Mazula, said she had not received the report at the time of going to Press on Wednesday. “I have not received such a report and have tasked someone in Chiredzi to investigate the matter,” she said.
Male circumcision is the removal of the foreskin from the human penis. In the most common procedure, the foreskin is opened, adhesions are removed, and the foreskin is separated from the glans. After that, the circumcision device (if used) is placed, and then the foreskin is removed.