Mayosi, who was Dean of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town, took his own life last week after grappling with depression. The funeral of the late world-renowned cardiologist, Professor Bongani Mayosi will be held in Cape Town on Saturday.
Mayosi was very vocal during the #FeesMustFall protests in 2016. The Black Academic Caucus at University of Cape Town (UCT) wants the institution’s council to set up an inquiry into Professor Mayosi’s tragic death.
Caucus spokesperson, Dr Tiri Chinyoka, says an inquiry will bring closure. “What we hope is that we are going to achieve a collective understanding from the UCT community as to what are the circumstances that led to Professor Mayosi taking the decision that he took because what we know is that especially black students have to face those kinds of decisions,” adds Chinyoka.
He’s been granted a special provincial official funeral by President Cyril Ramaphosa. Mayosi claimed his own life last week Friday following a two-year battle with depression. As an A-researcher, he was part of a team from UCT that identified a new gene last year which causes sudden death among young people and athletes.
The discovery of the CDH2 gene was said to be the biggest breakthrough in South African cardiology since Dr Chris Barnard’s first heart transplant. The gene causes a genetic disorder that makes young people susceptible to cardiac arrest.
Mayosi led the South Africa research team.
“The discovery of a gene is almost like looking for a needle in a haystack. Where you’ve got 3 billion changes in our genome, that’s what we have and there’s this one spelling error that you are looking for in 3 billion letters, so it requires major detective work and that requires skill and technology from all over the world,” says Mayosi.
According to research, cardiac deaths claim more than five lives every day in this country. Researchers from Italy collaborated in the study. At the time of the discovery of the CDH2 gene, Mayosi said it would permit the diagnosis and possible targeted treatment of heart muscle disease in the future.
Source: SABC News