Three family members die of food poisoning
Sukulwenkosi Dube-Matutu, Gwanda Correspondent
THREE family members have died in a suspected case of food poisoning in Gwanda.
Matabeleland South provincial police spokesperson, Chief Inspector Philisani Ndebele said Jotham Sibanda (64) from Matshiye Village died on Saturday while his two grandchildren aged six and eight-years-old died on Thursday and Friday last week.
He said Joram’s wife Mrs. Khohliso Sibanda (58) prepared food for her family on May 7 and they all fell ill resulting in the death of her husband and two grandchildren.
“I can confirm that we recorded a case where a man and his two children aged six and eight-years-old died in a suspected case of food poisoning. On May 7 in the morning Mrs. Sibanda prepared food which she ate with her husband and their three grandchildren aged six, eight, and 12-years-old,” he said.
“On the same day at around 11 AM they started vomiting and started suffering from diarrhea. They lost consciousness and were ferried to Gwanda Provincial Hospital where they were admitted. The condition of the child aged six worsened and he was further referred to Mpilo Hospital where he died on Thursday while admitted.”
Chief Insp Ndebele said the eight-year-old child died on Friday at home after he had been discharged from hospital while Joram Sibanda died on Saturday at his home after he had also been discharged from hospital. He said the matter was reported to the police who attended the scene.
Chief Insp Ndebele said investigations were underway to determine the source of poisoning. He appealed to members of the public with information that could assist in the investigations to contact the police.
The councilor of the area, Stanford Nkala said the community had been left shaken by the tragic incident. He said the cause of the deaths was suspected to be the food they ate at home as they did not eat anywhere else on the day in question.
Cllr Nkala said Sibanda who was the last one to die just collapsed while at his home when the bodies of his grandchildren had been brought home from the mortuary for burial the following day. He said the two children were buried on Sunday and Sibanda was yet to be buried.
“This is such a tragic incident which has befallen our community. It still remains unclear where the poison could have come from but all we know is that the food they ate at their home made them ill. Sibanda had been discharged from hospital and he was preparing to bury his two grandchildren when he collapsed and also died. Three people have gone in that family and two are remaining and we hope they will make it through,” he said.