It was a terrifying morning on Tuesday, May 16 when a swarm of bees attacked students of Government High School, GHS, Buea Town in Fako Division, Southwest Region.
What was even more disheartening was the fact that the authorities responded by dispatching armed soldiers to the school instead of emergency medical personnel.
People were quick to point out that the administration believes so much in troops that instead of sending more medics and equipment to administer first aid treatment to the injured students they instead sent people with guns.
This made some people ferry their own children to private clinics or took them home to administer their local treatments.
Meanwhile, as students scampered in different directions in an attempt to escape from the angry bees, the teachers and other school staff reportedly locked themselves in the staff room to avoid being stung.
As the bee attack intensified, students ran out of the school campus pursued by the flying insects.
Those who were seriously hurt by the bee stings were carried by friends, and later by some parents and guardians who rushed to the school to rescue their kids.
In the nearby Buea-Town Health Centre, students could be seen wailing in agony, with nurses attending to them in the consultation room and in one other ward.
Seeing the state of the health centre, some parents and guardians decided to take their children elsewhere.
An elderly woman who came to rescue her grandson and a child of his neighbour said she had given the two boys palm oil to drink as a way to treat the kids who had suffered serious bee stings.
The woman, who refused to be named, said she did not receive any assistance from Government or the school authorities to treat her grandson.
Inside the health centre, a young man in his late 20s stood over his two younger sisters, swearing that none of them would go to school again.
“You won’t come to school again…we will go to the farm together, after all the President said we should go to the farm and trust it…they said you will be safe, who will arrest the bees now?” the man said.
One of the girls, 16-year-old Muke Gracia, Lower Sixth Arts, said they were out doing manual labour behind the school campus when one of their mates struck a beehive and provoked the colony Muke said as they ran back to school, the bees pursued them and attacked everyone. Muke herself was stung several times in the head and back.
For his part, the Principle of the school, Georgiana Enanga, said, “It is a natural disaster; I don’t want people to give it other interpretations. We are preparing our school for exams and the campus had to be cleaned, and those who had to do that went behind the school and shot at a beehive.
As the bees started chasing them, they ran back to school, carrying the bees with them into the classrooms and that is what caused the uproar…it is not like something that was planned or whatever.”
The Principal said the GCE Computer practical that was going on was not affected. Meanwhile, some students who spoke to The Post said when the bees broke loose, everyone including the teachers had to run, leaving just a few behind who locked themselves in the staff room.
According to the students, everything was disturbed because the bees were everywhere.
Source: The Post Newspaper