By KELVIN MUDENDA
MORE than 50 students from David Livingstone College of Education (DALICE) in Livingstone were on Sunday evening rushed to Mahatma Ghandi clinic after they complained of severe diarrhoea and vomiting.
Health inspectors from both the ministry of Health and the Livingstone City Council rushed to the institution and immediately commenced investigations into the incident.
Some of the students who spoke on condition of anonymity said most of the affected students started complaining of stomach pains immediately after supper.
The students said the situation was aggravated after some started experiencing severe diarrhoea and vomiting, prompting others to alert the school authority who quickly rushed the affected students to Mahatma Ghandi clinic.
“As things stand now, we are in panic mode because the signs they showed were that of Cholera and so we wait for the principal to update us on the outcome,” the students said.
Nurses at Mahatma Ghandi clinic confirmed having received and attended to diarrhoea and vomiting cases but referred all queries to the district health director’s office.
When contacted, acting district health director Joseph Lungu’s mobile phone went unanswered.
Council public relations manager Melvin Mukela confirmed that the council had dispatched a team of health inspectors to DALICE and was still waiting for a report from them once they concluded with their investigations.
DALICE principal Chola Simpasa promised to issue a comprehensive statement after getting feedback from the health inspectors.
“We have an officer from health and so we will inform you after investigations,” he said.
Meanwhile one of the health inspectors who spoke on condition of anonymity said preliminary investigations had indicated that the affected students were reacting to some form of food poisoning.
He said 55 students were affected by the poisoning and dispelled any rumours of a suspected cholera outbreak at the institution.
He said the inspectors were currently inspecting the kitchen and interrogating the cooks at DALICE.
“Currently we are conducting preliminary investigations because as you know the cases are from last night (Sunday) and it involves 55 students.
“It seems that it was just some simple food poisoning, we are still investigating on the ground and there is nothing to be alarmed about, “he said.