The Police in Ebonyi State have confirmed that 12 students of Ginger International School in the state had been hospitalised after they were administered with drugs by the school authority.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the students became partly unconscious after being administered with the drugs.
They were rushed to the Federal Teaching Hospital (FETHA) Abakaliki, and Police clinic in the state for immediate medical attention.
DSP George Okafor, the command’s spokesman, who confirmed the incident on Saturday, said that the proprietor and head of the school had been invited for questioning.
“We are going to investigate the matter thoroughly to unravel the circumstances surrounding the incident,” he said.
NAN reports that anxious relative of the students were at the “Accident and Emergency Unit of FETHA,’’ where majority of them were admitted to ascertain their condition.
Sources said the anti-hermetic tablets which expert say were used for de-worming was administered on the students, aged between 12 and 15 years.
Mr Sam Igwe and Mrs Bilikisu Ahmed, parents of some of the victims alleged that the drugs were administered on their wards without their consent.
Dr Emeka Ogah, Chief Medical Director of FETHA, said that the drug sample had been collected and sent to the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) for analysis.
“The students are responding to treatment as we would do our best to get them fit again,” he said.
Prof. John Eke, State Commissioner for Education described the incident as embarrassing.
“The state government would come up with a policy that would make it mandatory for school managements to secure approval from the ministry before administering drugs on pupils and students,’’ he said.
Dr Daniel Umezurike, State Commissioner for Health said that the drugs were donated by one of the foreign development partners of the state which had been assisting in disease eradication.
“These drugs are administered intermittently to de-worm students but we assure the public that the incident would be investigated and situation brought under control,” he said.