The actual cause(s) of the latest Kumasi Academy deaths has remained unknown, heightening the fears of parents and students…
It has been a state of pandemonium at the Kumasi Academy following another bout of deaths which broke out among the students since last week involving four students. The students who took ill ahead of the school’s 60th anniversary held over the weekend, died between Thursday, November 30 and Tuesday, December 5.
Following the latest death which occurred in the early hours of yesterday [Tuesday], panic-stricken parents and guardians started trooping to the school to take their wards home. Their fears were also heightened when two more students collapsed while the Regional Minister was addressing the school following an emergency meeting with the Regional Security Council on Tuesday, adding to the number of casualties already on admission for treatments.
The Kumasi Academy deaths have since been tagged ‘mysterious’ owing to its nature and re-occurrence. Recall that four students of the Kumasi Academy also died earlier this year, between the 22nd and 31st of March, after suffering from similar illnesses. It was however, established after thorough investigations led by the Ghana Health Service in the Ashanti region that the students died of meningitis.
But unlike the March incident, the actual cause of the latest deaths have remained unknown at the moment although meningitis and viral hemorrhagic fever were initially speculated. However, a series of postmortem tests carried out on the deceased students by the Noguchi Memorial Centre for Medical Research, have ascertained that neither of the two diseases led to the death of the students.
According to the Ashanti Regional Health Director, Emmanuel Tinkorang, they have done series of investigations; blood investigations, CSM investigations as well as postmortem on all the deceased and the results have shown that it is not viral hemorrhagic fever as people were suspecting.
“We have done all the tests for meningitis. They are negative, so it shows that the condition is not meningitis,” he added.
A bacterial infection is rather being suspected, and students have already started receiving Azithromycin antibiotics against such. The Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei Mensah has however, disclosed that the Kumasi Academy would have to be closed down indefinitely after a proper screening and antibiotic vaccination of all the staff and students of the school.
“Looking at the level of agitation and apprehension, I think the best thing to do is immediately after they’ve given the dose, maybe we may have to close the school for sometime,” Mr. Osei Mensah suggested.
Parents Call for Health and Spiritual Intervention
Parents have on the Ghana heath Service (GES) to prioritize the issue of public health at the Kumasi Academy to prevent a repetition of such heartbreaking and preventable deaths at the school.
In addition to this, some parents are suspecting that the mysterious and re-occurring Kumasi Academy deaths could have underlying spiritual implications which needs to be looked into. Some of the parents, who spoke to Citi News after a meeting with the Ashanti Regional Minister and other stakeholders on Tuesday, suggested that the matter be followed with serious prayers since it could have been triggered by some spiritual forces.