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Govt assists food poison families

2023-06-02  John Muyamba

Govt assists food poison families

RUNDU – With 16 people from the Kayova homestead having succumbed to suspected food poisoning they allegedly consumed unknowingly at dinner on Saturday, the government is pulling out all the stops to assist their families.

The deceased were aged between two and 33, with the oldest reported to have died on Thursday morning.

The Kavango East Regional Council has donated eight tents to the families.

Kavango East governor Bonifasius Wakudumo said the donation is part of the support initiatives from society, and the Office of the Prime Minister, which provided food and coffins for the burial of the deceased, as well as the Namibian Defence Force, which provided transport.

“This is a national catastrophe and it needs effort from everyone to ensure that we give our people who departed a befitting burial,” said Wakudumo.

The governor, and other members of the regional council, visited the family of the deceased on Wednesday and described the situation at the homestead as calm but it is clearly visible that the family is in bereavement.

“Initially we received 13 patients as a referral from Nyangana, unfortunately they were in a critical condition, and we have lost all of them. The department took some specimen for toxicology testing and these were sent to NIP and some to South Africa and we will soon be getting the results that show exactly what was contained in the food they ate,” said the Rundu intermediate hospital superintendent Dr Jean Kalala Kabangu.

“Their livers were severely damage and the kidneys failed also, they were at an advanced stage that we could not save them,” he said.

“The total number of people involved has been revised from the initial 18 people to 24, with the youngest being one-year-old and the oldest 33 years old. Unfortunately, 16 have perished so far, two of them passed away at Nyangana district hospital,” said the health ministry’s acting regional director for Kavango East, Woyita Kapumburu.

“Currently, there is only one patient admitted at Rundu intermediate hospital, he was transferred from Nyanagana on Wednesday, he is (29) in a serious but stabilised condition, he is complaining of abdominal pain and diarrhoea,” he said.  

At Nyangana district hospital, there is a one-year-old girl, two two-year-old boys, an 11-year-old girl, a 13-year-old and a 14-year-old boy along with a 27-year-old woman, said Kaspumburu.

“The two-year-olds were discharged, but they are being kept in the hospital for care. The rest of the cases are stable,” Kapumburu noted.

The Namibian police have reported that their investigations are still pending regarding the suspected poison but have managed to identify the deceased.

They are Lishaka Shishugho (12) and Albertina Shishugho (6) who died at Nyangana hospital on Sunday morning.

Shishugho Innoncetia Matumbo Shishugho (6), Gende Mushongo (3), Chisola Litwayi (9), Liyomokera Kamuyoyo (2), Mununga Shishugho (14), Roswitha Mungamba (6), Rebecca Mwengere Mungamba (7), and Liyomkela Matjayi Kamuyoyo (9). The others are Rosalia Runguro Shishugho (10), Manguyi Johannes Mushongo (3), Anto Litwayi Ndumba (7), Gilbert Haushiku Shishugho (16) and Petrus Shishugho (20).

-Additional reporting from Nampa

2023-06-02  John Muyamba

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