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Mukumu Girls administration blames the media over closure after student deaths

The Sacred Heart Mukumu Girls’ High School in Kakamega County has come under fire for blaming the media for highlighting the situation that led to the school’s closure following the death of two students.

The school principal Fridah Ndolo, in a letter dated April 3, 2023, issued to parents, claimed that the school was closed due to the unfriendly environment created by the media.

“This is to notify you that following consultation of the Ministry of Education directors and TSC directors, it has been decided that students break off to heal of the toxic environment already create by media,” part of the statement reads.

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However, the statement directed parents and guardians to ensure that the students receive medical attention during the break and report any underlying issues to the Ministry of Health.

The school had earlier reported that 246 students were admitted to the hospital in one week, which doubled from an initial 124.

The Western region’s education director Mr Jared Obiero had earlier visited the school and said that the Ministry of Health and medical workers from the county government were investigating the cause of the disease outbreak.

The students complained of fatigue and breathlessness.

The school board of management chairman Dr Josphat Kaswira confirmed the death of the first student from Bungoma County, and the second student died at home in Navakholo on Sunday after falling sick.

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The two deaths sent panic to parents who flocked to the school demanding the release of their daughters.

While the school administration has come under fire for blaming the media for the school’s closure, the situation has raised concerns about students’ health in boarding schools nationwide.

The deaths of the two students have left many parents worried about the safety of their children. Earlier, the school principal called for prayers and urged parents to take their children to the hospital and monitor them closely.

In a notice to parents, the school principal had earlier said that the two students who died were in Form One W and Form Two C.

“Let’s pray for our students and the Mukumu community. If we take a child home for treatment, let us take her to the hospital and monitor her. We have lost two students. God, give us grace and wisdom to go through this trying moment. May the departed souls find eternal peace.”

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