Three brothers aged between six and 16, who were learners at Ratanda Primary and Khanya Lesedi Secondary Schools in Ratanda, Heidelberg in Gauteng, have died.
This allegedly happened after consuming energy drinks given to them by their father.
The Gauteng Education Department says the father gave all his five children energy drinks while preparing for school. The fourth sibling is in a critical condition while the fifth did not consume the drink.
I am saddened to learn about a father, who this morning allegedly poisoned his 4 children. 2 children died in our school premises while the 3rd died on his way to hospital. The 4th child is in a critical condition at the local hospital. My sincerest condolences @EducationGP1
— Panyaza Lesufi (@Lesufi) May 26, 2022
Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the deaths.
Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi will on Friday visit both schools and the family. Lesufi has also expressed his deep sadness at the incident.
Department Spokesperson, Steve Mabona, says: “It is alleged that the father of the three deceased gave all his five children energy drinks in the morning while they were preparing for school. Four of the said learners consumed the energy drink after arriving at school on Thursday, 26 May 2022. Sadly, two of the said learners died shortly at the school after complaining of stomach pains while one was rushed to the nearest hospital but died on the way. The fourth sibling is in a critical condition at the hospital while the fifth, fortunately, did not consume the energy drink.”