Death toll increases in the bush

2016-12-15 06:01

The initiation death toll in the Eastern Cape has increased to 17, while two initiates have died in the Western Cape, authorities said on Tuesday.

Eastern Cape traditional affairs department spokesperson Mamkeli Ngam said the number of deaths in the province during the current initiation season continued to increase.

“The only way we are going to address this issue is when families take the responsibility into their own hands to look after their own children,” Ngam said.

Families needed to continuously check up on their children, he told News24.

He called on parents to lay criminal charges against those suspected of running illegal initiation schools.

Meanwhile, in the Western Cape, two initiates had died since the beginning of the season. The provincial health department said it had done all it could to minimise deaths. Spokesperson Mark van der Heever said several doctors were trained to do male circumcisions and the province handed out free clinical kits to traditional leaders to minimise infections.

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