The Star (Nairobi)

26 February 2013

Kenya: Mystery Illness Kills Two Girls in Machakos School

Public health officials have taken blood samples from pupils of Ngelani primary school in Machakos county after two of them died on Thursday from a mysterious illness.

The two 11-year-old pupils died after complaining of severe headache before vomiting in school. Other ten pupils subsequently complained of headache and similar symptoms sending panic in the standard six class.

Public health officials were called in and took blood samples from 7 pupils but discounted claims that there was any outbreak. Machakos public health officer, Timothy Nzau said preliminary investigations have ruled out any disease outbreak and the cause of deaths could have been through poison digested by the two pupils.

Bodies of the two girls were taken to Machakos hospital mortuary awaiting autopsy to determine the cause of death. Scores of parents flocked the school on Friday on learning of the incident but were assured by public health authorities that there was no outbreak of a contagious disease. It is suspected that the two girls could have unknowingly shared poisoned food.

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