Some parents of Queens College, Lagos have been expressing worries and disappointment in the way both Federal and Lagos State governments have handled the affairs of the School in the last six weeks it was shut down indefinitely, just as they mourn the passage of yet another Student, Praise Sodipo.
The Senior Secondary One (SS1) Student described as an orphan, was until her death last Thursday admitted at the intensive care unit of the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) where she underwent treatment for acute enteric fever.
Some of the parents under the aegis of ‘Concerned Parents’, who however pleaded anonimity saying, “we have been told not to speak to Journalists”, have expressed worries over continued closure of the School and are calling for an investigation into the whole episode of the ourbreak of water borne disease in the presitigious 90year old institution.
Speaking with our Corespondent, one of the parents noted, “With some students still in hospital nearly two months since the outbreak of the water disease, we are more worried if the infection is not beyond Typhoid or some other water diseases we are told was the problem.
“Now the JS3 and SS3 students are sitting for their final examination under vigorous condition what about those in JS2 and SS2 who will be writing their exams next? What abot the families of those children who died; what exactly is federal government planning to do for them?, the parent asked rhetorically.
Another aggrieved parent said, “We want the Federal Ministry of Education to probe the outbreak of water disease in the school which led to the death of four of the students; we are calling for a panel of enquiry to know those who were responsible for the degeneration of the College and we believe the former Prinicipal, Dr Lami Amodu has some questions to answer”.
Efforts to get the Principal, Mrs Aduke Are to speak was futile but Chairman of the Parents Teachers’ Association (PTA), Sir John Ofobike in a brief chat with Healthstyleplus Online noted that the Association regrets the death of Miss Sodipo.
“Its such a pity that after so much effort to save the life of the young Lady, she eventually passed away. We members of the School’s PTA feel deeply pained by her death and the death of other students from the unfortunate crisis that occured in the school. It is our prayer that such a terrible thing will never happen in the College or anywhere else again”, said Ofobike.
Our Correspondent however learnt that as part of the clean-up exercise going on in the School, the State ministry of Health has commenced the treatment of all the School food handlers suspected to be infected with “cyst of Entamoeba histolyca”.
The suspected 23 food handlers out of the 40 staff working in the School kitchen were alleged by the Commissioner of Health Dr. Jide Idris at a media briefing to have contrinuted to th espread of the disease.
According to Idris, ” Stool specimens collected from 40 kitchen staff revealed the following:”
“Cyst of Entamoeba histolytica were isolated in th estool of 23 food handlers;
Samonella sp, the causative agent of Typhoid Fever was isolated from three (3) food handlers” , said the Commissioner.
According to him, “All these put together, implies a common source (continous) outbreak showing repeated or continous infection from exposure to the infectious agent.
“Findings from the investigation were consistent with enteric fever. The infection was most lkely spread through contaminated water sources and infection by food handlers”, th ecommissioner pointed out.
Similarly, more samples of water from the School are being taken for further laboratory analysis, the last time being on Friday when officials of the State Ministry of Health came for more water samples.
.Reacting on Saturday, Health Commissioner, Idris told Healthstyleplus Online that the Ministry will make a public statement on the latest development by Monday.