Man commits suicide after reportedly losing N2.5 million online bet

A 31-year-old man has committed suicide in Abia State, Nigeria’s South-east, after reportedly losing N2.5 million in an online bet.

The victim, Chukwuma Onoh, was said to have borrowed N1.2 million from friends which he combined with his N1.3 million to place a bet but failed to win it. Mr Onoh had, earlier on the same day in a WhatsApp message, pleaded with a man said to be his boss to help him clear a debt of N1.2 million which he incurred after losing the N2.5 million bet.

“The only option is to end my life as I cannot live with the shame. I have turned into a gambler because of no job, and right now, I am at a point if I don’t redeem my debt, I might kill myself to pay the debt,”

– he reportedly wrote in the WhatsApp message seen by PREMIUM TIMES.

A screenshot of the victim’s WhatsApp chat with the man has been circulating on social media.

“I used N2,500,000 to place a bet and N1.2 m is not my own and if I don’t pay up today. I will be dead by the time you read this message. As I type this message, I am where I want to buy a sniper,” he added.

The man told Mr Onoh that he was out of cash to help at the moment and that the victim should ask his creditors to “hold on” so he (the victim) could clear the debts based on instalment payments.

How it started

On Tuesday, Mr Onoh dropped a suicide note on his Facebook page which prompted some of his friends to reach out to him.

“Today is my last day on earth! I (am) going to meet my maker,” – he wrote without giving a reason.

The victim thanked some of his associates and friends. “My spirit is with you all,” he told them. Mr Onoh, who hailed from Arochukwu Local Government Area of Abia State, was said to have taken the sniper less than two hours after making the post on his Facebook page. He was later rushed to Madonna Hospital Umuahia by friends but was declared dead by the doctors on duty.

A video clip circulating on social media showed him in the hospital being attended to by the doctors. One of his friends, Chisom Ibeako, confirmed the development to PREMIUM TIMES on Wednesday morning.

Ms Ibeako said she was “heartbroken” watching the victim die at the hospital despite efforts by doctors and nurses to resuscitate him. She expressed surprise that the victim would take his own life despite often helping to mobilise funds for various persons in difficulty, regretting that she did not see the victim’s Facebook post on time.

“Some of his friends who saw his post first thought it was a joke until he did a live video. But as at the time, he has already taken the sniper,” – she said.

Ms Ibeako said the victim was not opening up to his friends and based on her interactions with the late Onoh’s sisters at the hospital, the victim did not also open up to his family members. She said although the victim was a university graduate, he was not engaged in any known job. Sniper, a highly toxic pesticide, has lately been used by some Nigerians to commit suicide.

When contacted on Wednesday morning, the police spokesperson in Abia State, Maureen Chinaka, said she was attending a conference outside the state and would not be able to comment on the incident at the moment.

I will get back to you later,” – said Ms Chinaka, an assistant superintendent of police.


Meanwhile, Nigerians have expressed outrage on social media over the incident. While many condemned the victim for taking his life on the basis of losing a bet, others expressed anger that his friends did not notice he was going through financial difficulty. A Facebook user, Onyebuchi Ezeleonu, accused the victim of being driven by greed.

“Whatever that had made you take this path, doesn’t worth it. You allowed the pressure of the world and that of fake life to overwhelm you,” – Mr Ezeleonu wrote.

Abuchi Obika, another Facebook user, expressed anger that the victim’s friends did not notice that he was in trouble before now.


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