teargasPupils and teachers from Tshithuthuni Primary School were taken to hospital last week after a pupil let off teargas in the classroom.

The incident took place last Monday, shortly before the school day ended and 47 grade seven pupils and three teachers had to be transported by ambulance from Tshithuthuni Village after inhaling teargas in a classroom.

Maudu Netshithuthuni, chairperson of the school governing body said a Grade seven learner smashed a teargas canister into the wall of a classroom.

“It was damaged and had a small opening which released the gas. One of the learners in the class developed a swollen face while others started to sneeze.  Three of the teachers who went into the class also started to sneeze after they inhaled the gas,” Netshithuthuni said in a telephonic interview.

Netshithuthuni said the group was taken to hospital by several ambulances on Tuesday morning.

Netshithuthuni said everyone was checked and given a clean bill of health, including the pupil with the swelling to her face..

Netshithuthuni said the boy claimed he found the teargas canister lying in a street while walking to the school.

Police spokesperson, Warrant Officer Edward Tharaga, of Siloam Police Station disputed the fact that the tin was full of gas when the boy found it in the street.

“It is not true that there is a child who inhaled the gas as the tin was empty when the boy found it in the street,” said Tharaga.

Tharaga declined to answer any further question saying that: “We are avoiding to ask many questions to the boy as he is busy writing exams.  Right now we are going to assess the tin to help us come with the answers on how it landed in the street.”