26 hospitalised over food poisoning

Kayonza-At least 26 people are admitted at Gahini Hospital after drinking suspected poisoned milk  from a school canteen and a local restaurant popularly known as ‘Seeds of Peace’ in Gahini Sector.The victims include Gahini College students, their head teacher, school bursar and others who took the milk.
Some of milk poison victims recover at Gahini hospital. Photo by S. Rwembeho.
Some of milk poison victims recover at Gahini hospital. Photo by S. Rwembeho.

Kayonza-At least 26 people are admitted at Gahini Hospital after drinking suspected poisoned milk  from a school canteen and a local restaurant popularly known as ‘Seeds of Peace’ in Gahini Sector.

The victims include Gahini College students, their head teacher, school bursar and others who took the milk.

The milk supplier of the school canteen doubles as the owner of ‘Seeds of Peace’ restaurant.

Ten people from the school are admitted at the hospital while the rest consumed the milk from Seeds of Peace restaurant on the shores of Lake Muhazi.

Damascene Munyensanga, the bursar, said that three hours after drinking a cup of milk, he became weak, nauseated, developed stomach pain then diarrhoea.

“It is the first time I have been admitted (to hospital) since I was born...If it had not been for neighbours who told me that all who drunk the milk are in hospital, I would have remained at home,” he said.

David Barinda, a Senior Two student at Gahini College, said he developed a terrible headache and diarrhoea after drinking the milk.

Denise Uwera, the officer in charge of health in Kayonza District, said that irresponsible handling of milk could have caused the poisoning.

She said that distributing and selling toxic milk to the public was extremely unacceptable.

“Dirty containers exposed to house flies could cause the illness we saw...it is unfortunate and some people could face the law for their irresponsible behaviour,” she said.

Christine Umutoni, a nurse treating the patients told The New Times that they are not only following up on the patients, but also trying to identify what went wrong. The milk samples have been dispatched to Kigali for laboratory tests to ascertain the cause.

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