Death of Professor Mayosi puts spotlight on depression

Bongani Mayosi
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Vice Chancellor at University of Cape Town Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng says the death of the Dean of Health Sciences, Professor Bongani Mayosi presents an opportunity for the institution to reflect on many staffers who suffer with depression and other difficulties.

Phakeng says Mayosi and many academics were badly affected by the 2015 FeesMustFall protests. Mayosi’s family has issued a statement saying he committed suicide on Friday.

Phakeng told a media briefing that the 51 year old cardiology professor had taken  three month leave early this year for depression.

She says the two week occupation of Mayosi’s faculty by the FeesMustFall students in 2016, hit him hard. “During the protests he experienced pressure from staff and at some stages from students, black students, and as vice chancellors, I can tell you right now that we have a lot of people at the university right now. We have Doctor Mayosi who has committed suicide but we have some who are still in their jobs and they are hurting.  We have some who’ve experienced heart attacks, they have survived and are still here with us, but things are tough.”