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07.07.2005 General News

"Lapiwa" Meal Kills Six Children

Graphic

Hours after a meal of 'kokonte' (aka Lapiwa, Face-the-wall), a man, his wife and six of their children have all died at Tebeso Number One, throwing the village in the Amansie East District of Ashanti into a state of shock. Family members suspect food poisoning.

Opanin Yaw Tsiburu, 70, and his family were said to have complained of severe abdominal pains moments after eating the meal, which was prepared in their home on Republic Day, July 1, 2005.

They were rushed to the Bekwai Government Hospital, where they all died later.

Four of them died on Saturday morning, three on Sunday morning and the last one in the evening of Sunday.

Police gave their names as Yaa Vigzro, 65, mother of the children, Okomfo Tsiburu, 37, David Vigzro, 30, Akwasi Tsiburu, 25, Akwasi Tsiburu Jnr, 18, Gifty Tsiburu, 13, and Kwame Owusu, 19, all children of the couple.

Chief Superintendent Paul Frimpong Siaw, the Ashanti Regional Police Crime Officer, confirming the story, told the Graphic that it was too early to suspect any foul play. He indicated that police investigations were being carried into the matter.

Mr Siaw, however, stated that the police had invited a suspect, whose name he gave only as Jonah, to assist in investigations.

He said Winfred Kuleafenu and Wilberforce Rogboso reported the matter to the police in Bekwai after the victims had been conveyed to the hospital.

He said the bodies of the deceased had since been deposited at the Bekwai Hospital mortuary for autopsy.

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