Sokoto family loses 22 members after poisonous meal | Dailytrust

Sokoto family loses 22 members after poisonous meal

Mourners at the house of the 22 persons that died after taking a poisonous food in Sokoto
Mourners at the house of the 22 persons that died after taking a poisonous food in Sokoto

Tragedy struck on Tuesday in Danzanke village, Bargaja ward, Isa Local Government Area of Sokoto State as 22 persons belonging to one family died after eating food that was cooked with fertilizer which was mistaken for food seasoning.


Daily Trust learnt that the deceased were members of an extended family who were living together in the same compound.

According to our findings, 22 persons including five mothers and 18 children belonging to six households died as a result of the incident while two are currently on admission.

The counsellor representing Bargaja ward, Mu’azu Kabiru, who confirmed this to Daily Trust, said they initially thought it was a case of Cholera because there was an outbreak in the area which had already killed four persons.

“When I was informed in the morning, I rushed with some medical personnel and anti-bacterial drugs to the house because we assumed they were suffering from cholera.

“After seeing the severity of their condition, we decided to take them to the nearest clinic for further assessment and treatment.

“Initially it was 18 victims. It was after we rushed them to the hospital that we were called that four more were down and were brought to the hospital.

“Initially, they were responding to treatment, some of them even looked stabilized. But before dawn, 18 were gone while the remaining four followed later.

“It was then that we started digging to know what actually happened and we found out that they ate from the same pot. One of the family members who did not eat the food told us that they all complained of stomach ache after they had eaten.

“So, we took a sample of the food and it was confirmed that it was mixed with Gishirin Lalle,” he said.

It was learnt that the woman who cooked dinner for the family that day mistook fertilizer for food seasoning which she added to the soup.

She asked one of the children to get some salt for her after tasting and found the food to be less salted.

“The child mistakenly brought some gishirin lalle for her which she put in the soup,” the source said.

The counsellor, however, ruled out foul play, saying the woman and all her children were among the dead.

He said that all the six heads of the households are still alive because they had not eaten the food before the problem started.

Reacting to the development, the state Commissioner of Health, Dr. Ali Inname, said that attempts to save the lives of all the affected people by providing the needed medical care sadly proved abortive.

“The ministry wishes the general public would learn from this incidence and always be cautious, in order to prevent its reoccurrence.

“It is very important for the public to know that this incidence though preventable and not contagious, is extremely fatal even with best of medical attention and care,” he said.

Inname further advised the general public to separate storage sites for food items from other agricultural and cosmetic items and to double check all ingredients and food stuff before use.

He also counselled them to secure their food items and water sources.

The commissioner cautioned that wells should have platforms to prevent contamination from faeces from surface water after rainfall as well as to report to hospitals or isolation camp in their area early when they observe any unusual symptoms or unusual condition.

He extended their heartfelt condolences to the relations of the deceased, while praying for the repose of their souls.


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