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By Lamin Cham

The child at the heart of the dramatic rape trial of famous youth activist Bob Keita has died, days after a court ordered for his blood sample to be collected for a DNA test.

The court is trying Keita for the alleged rape of his wife’s ‘underage’ sister, mother of the dead child. Keita denies the charge and last week the court granted the prosecution’s prayers for a DNA test to be conducted on the child, Keita himself and one other person believed to be a boyfriend of the child’s mother to establish parentage. The defence had initially opposed such and order but the judge ruled that the DNA test must be conducted


However, at the last hearing on Thursday, the court heard that the child had been sick and admitted in a Dakar hospital in a coma.

On Sunday, news emerged that the child had passed away, reportedly of suffocation after been left in a locked car for hours. The Standard confirmed the passing of the child from close relatives but not the reported cause of death.

Reports of the child’s passing sparked renewed and heightened interest in the case that has been dragging for well over a year and months after Keita’s initial bail was revoked.

Many are now calling for a police investigation into the death of the child for any possible link with the ongoing trial.