No fewer than seven pupils died on Sunday night when a “mysterious” fire razed the Government Girls’ Secondary School (GGSS) at Jogana, Gezawa Local Government Area of Kano State.
The fire, according to an eyewitness, started at 8.10pm, when the pupils were preparing to go to bed.
A security man, who pleaded not to be named, said: “…The school was in darkness because there was no power supply. The pupils had taken their dinner and were preparing to retire to bed when we heard the girls screaming from Alhaji Sani Yaro Ahmed Hostel.
“We thought they were being attacked by rapists. But we saw thick smoke coming out of the hostel. As we rushed to the place, there was stampede: the pupils struggled to escape from the fire.”
It was learnt that the casualty figure was high because the pupils rushed through a narrow gate, which caused the stampede.
The eyewitness confided that the death of the seven pupils was as a result of a stampede that ensued when they were struggling to escape from the narrow gate of the hostel when the fire engulfed the hostel.
Kano State Deputy Governor Hafiz Abubakar, who doubles as commissioner for Education, described the incident as mysterious.
He confirmed the death of the seven pupils, adding that the government would pay the bills of the injured, who are getting treatment at government hospitals.
Police Commissioner Mohammed Musa Katsina also visited the school.
Addressing reporters on the incident, Katsina said: “You are aware it was a fatal fire, which led to the death of seven pupils. Many others were injured. I am moved and I stand in solidarity with the people of the state in this moment of grief. I console the state government, parents of these pupils and other people of Kano. May Allah give us the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.”
It was learnt that the school, which was established 40 years ago, has experienced three “mysterious” fire incidents.
Source: The Nation