CAIRO: The local council in Alexandria launched an investigation into the alleged suicide of a 12-year-old boy living in the SOS Children’s Village.
The incident is the first of its kind to take place in the SOS village for abandoned children and orphans, which is generally recognized as one of the leading charity organizations for children in the country.
Ahmed Aly, a correspondent with Al Jazeera’s online service as well as the Muslim Brotherhood’s Ikhwan Online, attended a meeting of the Local Council in Alexandria where fiery discussions over the reason behind the suicide erupted.
The meeting was attended by Alexandria Governor Adel Labib.
Aly told Daily News Egypt that the issue was raised by Salwa Mohamed Othman, a member of the council, who filed a complaint to the governor calling for an investigation into the death at the SOS village in Alexandria. Othman said she had heard several complaints from children who say they are subjected to “physical and psychological abuse in the village.
Speaking to Daily News Egypt, Othman confirmed news of the suicide and the complaint she filed with the governor. She was not available for further comment at press time, but promised Daily News Egypt an interview.
Members of the local council in Alexandria asked the prosecutor’s office to conduct an autopsy to determine the cause of death, said Aly.
A leading official at the SOS Children’s Village in Alexandria, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Daily News Egypt that “the accident was not a suicide.
“Who said that it is a suicide? Investigations are still underway, he said.
The head office of the SOS Children’s Village in Cairo – which is under the authority of the Ministry of Social Solidarity – told Daily News Egypt that they cannot speak to the media without documented consent from the ministry.
The SOS Children’s Village Alexandria is located in Al-Amreyah district, 33 km outside of Alexandria. The village has around 11 houses that are home to more than 100 children, according to the organization’s official website.
The SOS village in Alexandria also houses a workshop, a clinic, a kindergarten and an elementary school.