Beirut: A man died after setting himself on fire, because he failed to pay for his sick daughter to be admitted to hospital, on Friday in northern Lebanon.
Born in 1977 in Tripoli, Haysam Al Neez drenched himself with petrol and deliberately burned himself after hospitals refused to admit his sick daughter without an upfront payment earlier this month.
On December 13 Al Neez, suffering from third degree burns, was rushed to Al Salam Hospital and instantly admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
A resident of the Al Tarbeeah area, Al Neez was seen running like a fireball by some pedestrians and friends in the Inner Market area after he set himself afire.
His case marks the fourth suicide due to poverty and destitution in recent days in Lebanon, which has been witnessing ongoing protests against corruption and the worsening economic situation for two months.
The 42-year-old father was said to have dropped his daughter home after being turned down by hospitals, before setting himself on fire.
Speaking to Gulf News from Al Salam Hospital, the supervisory physician Dr Salah Ishaq said: “Al Neez was brought here suffering of 70 per cent severe third degree burns. He was unconscious and was instantly put on a respiratory machine. His case was hopeless and it was just a matter of time. He succumbed to bodily burns at 9pm on Friday evening.”
Only a few friends and maybe a brother visited him once, according to Dr Ishaq, who could not verify any information about what forced Al Neez to commit suicide.
“I have no information about his personal life. He set himself on fire, while friends stood watching. That’s all we knew about his case,” he added.
On December 5, a 56-year-old jobless man, Nazih Aoun, committed suicide at home in Nabatiyyeh, citing his dire financial condition.
It was the third such incident in five days as Dany Abu Haidar had earlier shot himself with a rifle over a 3 million Lebanese pound (Dh7,300) debt in Al Naba’a.
The first case was a destitute man, Naji Al Fulaiti, who hanged himself over a 700,000-pound debt and his inability to give his daughter 1,000 Lebanese pounds to buy flatbread in Arsal.