Eastern Cape initiates die after not given enough water

2018-11-20 16:10
Initiates gather during their graduation ceremony. (Sandile Ndlovu, Gallo Images, Sowetan, file)

Initiates gather during their graduation ceremony. (Sandile Ndlovu, Gallo Images, Sowetan, file)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Two men, both aged 20, have become the first casualties of this year's summer initiation season in the Eastern Cape, just a few days after it got underway.

The two reportedly died on Thursday and Friday after suffering from dehydration.

"The two initiates were circumcised on November 6 and 9 and died because of dehydration," provincial cooperative governance and traditional affairs (Cogta) spokesperson Mamkeli Ngam told News24.

READ: Cogta pleads with parents to check legitimacy of initiation centres as death toll climbs

Ngam said Cogta MEC Fikile Xasa dispatched officials to investigate the cause of death and a preliminary investigation had been conducted.

"The confirmation was that indeed, they were not given enough water. It is against the law to deny initiates or any other person water because water is a basic human right," Ngam said.

He said the team that was sent to investigate was compiling a report that would be presented to the MEC.

Ngam added that the Eastern Cape government leadership had decided that there would be severe consequences for any negligence detected at any of the province's initiation schools this season.

He said the severe consequences would also apply to the parents and communities who should also play a role in ensuring that initiates are safe.

'Severe consequences' for initiation schools, parents, communities

"The [Eastern Cape] Customary Male Initiation Practice Act is there and has been explained to everyone. Everybody has the responsibility starting from the parents, families, communities, traditional leaders, ingcibi namakhankatha [traditional doctors and nurses]," Ngam said.

"It's unthinkable to say that initiates will not be given water for them to heal, so there must be consequences because the right to water is a constitutional right for everyone and should not exclude initiates," he said.

Ngam said what was most important to the department was to have the process monitored to ensure that all districts and metro municipalities in the province are ready for the season.

"Our role is to intervene in areas where there's a need. Our teams on the ground are ready to roll to ensure that they are going to monitor. However, we cannot be in each and every corner and that's why we encourage parents and communities to play a role," Ngam said.

He said it was important for parents to work with traditional leaders to ensure that they weren't operating illegally.

The summer initiation season was launched last Friday. Ngam added that all stakeholders, including the department of health, traditional leaders and police, were committed to ensuring deaths at initiation schools were curbed this season.  

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter

Read more on:    port elizabeth  |  initiation
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
Traffic

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

SQL Reporter

Cape Town
Communicate Cape Town IT
R10 000.00 - R12 000.00 Per Month

Reporting Accountant

Cape Town
Network Finance Professional / Prudential
R310 000.00 - R360 000.00 Per Year

Cluster Financial Manager

Cape Town
Network Finance
R950 000.00 - R1 000 000.00 Per Year

Property [change area]

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.