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Five students injured in Lamu dormitory fire

Thursday May 10 2018

School fires

A security guard at the Lamu Boys Secondary School looks at mattresses that were burnt down in a fire that occured on May 9, 2018. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

KALUME KAZUNGU
By KALUME KAZUNGU
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Five students were injured and property destroyed at Lamu Boys Secondary School when a fire broke out in one of the dormitories on Wednesday night.

The school board chairman, Mr Masjid Basheikh, who is also the local chief, told Nation that the students were hurt in a stampede that ensued after the fire broke out as colleagues rushed to the dormitory to salvage their belongings.

Mr Basheikh said the fire burnt down about 30 mattresses and beds.

“I was walking near the school when I heard some noises and cries. I hurriedly went to the school and found the dormitory on fire. Our students tried their best to put out the fire. It was around 8.25pm. Some mattresses, beds and students clothes and boxes were destroyed,” said Mr Basheikh.

The school board chairman said a probe is underway to establish the cause of the fire even though he ruled out student involvement in the incident.

“We have launched investigations as the school board but as for me, I have ruled out suspicion that the fire might have been started by our students,” said Mr Basheikh.

The injured students were treated at the Lamu King Fahad County Hospital with four being discharged while one is still receiving treatment at the facility.

The school principal Mr Ahmed Kale also confirmed the incident, saying his students were attending evening studies when the fire started.

“I sent my students for evening preps at around 7pm. We noticed the dormitory was on fire at around 8.20pm and we immediately moved in to put out the fire before it could spread. We have a board meeting this morning with investigation already underway to establish the exact cause of the fire,” said Mr Kale.

The principal said the school activities will proceed as the board finds a way forward.

“We have our first continuous assessment test this morning. We were supposed to have done the tests last week but due to the power outages, we were unable to print the test papers,” said Mr Kale.

On May 26, last year the school was closed after students went on rampage and torched a section of the boarding master’s office.

Two litres of petrol, match boxes and phones were found hidden in a ceiling inside one of the dormitories.

In June, 2016, the school was also closed after students went on rampage to protest against suspension of their six colleagues who were found in possession of mobile phones, sim cards, phone chargers and other accessories within the school compound, a gross violation of the school rules and regulations.