14 pupils take ill at Cape Town school after mass faintings

Fourteen pupils at Masonwabe Primary School in Delft, Cape Town, are being assessed after some reportedly collapsed or fainted on Thursday, the Western Cape Education Department said.

Department spokesperson Bronagh Hammond said it is not yet clear what transpired, but the pupils were taken to Delft Community Health Centre and Symphony Way Community Day Centre for further medical evaluation.

Metro police, the SA Police Service, disaster risk management, medics and the school social workers all jumped into action after hearing the pupils had fallen ill.

"Parents have come to the school to collect their children," said Hammond. "Some community members are claiming that this is a result of witchcraft."

The department appealed to residents to remain calm.

"Right now our priority is to ensure that all learners are safe and that those needing medical attention are seen to," she said. 

"We await more information from medical professionals as to symptoms and reasons for their alleged ill health."

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