Sixteen children from Mponela in Dowa were rushed to Mponela Rural Hospital on Saturday after they ate wild leguminous plants during their play time, police have confirmed.
Mponela Police spokesperson Kondwani Kandiado said in an interview on Monday that six of the children are currently admitted to the hospital while 10 others were treated as outpatients.
“They prepared the wild leguminous plants popularly known as chipulumbudzu and ate it together during what they call masanje time. Soon after eating the food, all of them started vomiting, experiencing cramps and suffered from diarrhoea,” said Kandiado.
He said parents and guardians rushed to the scene and hired a vehicle to take the children to the hospital where they received immediate treatment.
“Hospital attendants confirmed it was food poisoning. They were given additional medication to take at home,” said Kandiado.
He said the other six were not in condition to return home and are currently still receiving treatment at the hospital.
Kandiado said all the 16 children, with ages from three to 12 years, come from Binda Village, Traditional Authority (T/A) Dzoole in Dowa.