At least 21 teenagers, probably the youngest, only 13 this weekend South Africa A tragedy whose cause remains unknown. According to state officials, many are believed to have been students celebrating the end of their high school exams on Saturday night.
There were no visible scars on the body. Authorities ruled out stampede as a possible cause and said autopsy would determine if death could be associated with poisoning.
According to AFP correspondents, a large number of people, including parents whose children were missing, gathered outside the tavern where a tragedy broke out while the morgue was collecting bodies in East London on Sunday.
High-ranking government officials rushed to the southern cities. They included police minister Bheki Cele, who shed tears and collapsed after coming out of the morgue where the bodies were stored.
“It’s a terrible scene,” he told reporters. “They are pretty young. When you are told they are 13 or 14, you go there and you see them. It breaks (you).”
The Eastern Cape state government said eight girls and 13 boys had died. It was found that 17 people were dead in the tavern. The rest died in the hospital.
People over the age of 18 are allowed to drink at a tavern in a town commonly called Shebeen. This tavern often has a family home, and in some cases inside the home, with cheeks on the cheeks.
However, safety regulations and the drinking age law are not always in force.
“The child there died on the scene,” said the parents of a 17-year-old boy.
“This child, we didn’t expect to die like this. This is a humble child and respectful,” said the sadness of standing next to her husband outside the morgue. The dark mother, Ntombizonke Mgangala, said.
A 17-year-old girl who calls herself Rory to Reuters said taverns are popular among teens.
President Cyril Ramaphosa in attendance G-7 Summit In Germany, he sent his condolences.
He expressed concern about the reported situation in which such young people gathered in places that seemingly should be off limits to people under the age of 18.
Authorities are currently considering whether to revise the liquor license rules.
“That’s absolutely unbelievable; .. so you lose 20 young lives,” said state Prime Minister Oscar Mabuyane, visibly shocked.
He was talking to reporters before the price was updated to at least 21.
He accused “unlimited consumption of liquor”.
“You can’t think that youths aren’t going to experiment in this way, trading in the middle of society,” he said, outside the tavern, in a residential area called Scenery Park.
According to Unathi Binqose, a safety government official who arrived at the scene at dawn, empty bottles of alcohol, wigs, and even pastel purple “Happy Birthday” sashes are scattered on the dusty streets outside the two-story Enyobeni Tavern. rice field.
Excluding stampede as the cause of death, Binqose told AFP that “there are no visible open wounds.”
“Forensics take samples and test for any addiction,” he said, adding that the bar is crowded.
Local newspaper DispatchLive Reported on its website: “Body is lying scattered on tables, chairs, and floors, with no obvious signs of injury.”
Parents and officials said they understand that many of the dead are students celebrating the “Pendown” party held after the high school exam.
Local television showed police officers trying to calm a crowd of parents and spectators gathered outside a club in the city on the Indian Ocean coast, about 620 miles south of Johannesburg.
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