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 Fire Kills 7 children, Others Gravely Injured

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toubab1020 Posted - 18 Oct 2021 : 11:00:32

By Kaddy Jawo on Oct 17, 2021

In the early hours of Sunday, around 2:am, a devastating fire outbreak consumed an important section of the Bilal Boarding school for Quran Memorization for Boys, situated at New Yundum. As of now, the tragic accident has claimed the lives of seven kids.

A student at one of the Bilal boarding schools, confirmed to the Chronicle that the tragic incident occurred at 2: am, first killing five children. Two more kids died later as a result of the severe injuries they sustained.

Half a dozen more pupils who sustained third and second-degree burns are currently admitted to the hospital.

“We don’t know the cause of the fire yet, but investigations are ongoing,” the student added.

Meanwhile, the school needs help to support the families of the bereaved. Any support can reach the school on this number +220 246 0380
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toubab1020 Posted - 25 Oct 2021 : 13:21:10

By Olimatou Coker October 25, 2021

A week after a tragic fire accident at Bilal Boarding School for Qur’anic Memorisation in Yundum claimed the lives of six male pupils, an additional three have died in Senegal over the weekend.

Speaking to The Standard on the latest development, Essa Muhammed Jawara, the proprietor of the school, confirmed that the three who were evacuated to Senegal for treatment succumbed to their burns, died and their remains were interred yesterday. He said another pupil is receiving treatment in Senegal and two others are in hospitals in The Gambia and are responding well to their treatment.

“This is really a very sad and terrible moment for me I swear. I pray that God heals them as soon as possible,” Jawara told The Standard.

It has been reported two of the pupils who died in the fire are siblings.
toubab1020 Posted - 21 Oct 2021 : 12:36:53

By Marntala Tala Jaw On Oct 20, 2021
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has announced that it is investigating the deadly fire outbreak that claimed the lives of seven kids at the Bilal Boarding School in Yarambamba, West Coast Region, on 17th October 2021.

The NHRC said in a press statement that it “is extremely saddened by the news of the death of children in the fire incident NHRC extends its deepest condolences to the families of the victims, their fellow students, and friends. It also wishes a speedy recovery to those students who are currently hospitalized”.

NHRC is currently investigating this sad incident to establish the exact cause of the fire and the circumstances surrounding the occurrence. With the outcome of this investigation, NHRC will engage with the relevant Government authorities to ensure full accountability.

NHRC wishes to reiterate that State institutions with oversight for children’s protection, in particular the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Welfare, should ensure that childcare centers and private residential care homes, including boarding schools of every sort, conform to the dictates of Sections 198 – 203 of the Children’s Act 2005, with Minimum Standard of Care implemented in full. Furthermore, these State institutions’ obligations are to regularly inspect these facilities, rigorously monitor the implementation of these standards and guidelines, and severely penalize those care institutions and facilities found wanting.

NHRC calls on the school and other relevant authorities to ensure that students present at the time of the incident receive the necessary psycho-social support to overcome the shock and trauma this may have caused. The Government, parents, and caregivers must always seek children’s best interest and ensure their safety under care or in their homes as protected by law.
toubab1020 Posted - 20 Oct 2021 : 14:42:24


By Olimatou Coker on October 20, 2021

Essa Muhammed Jawara, the proprietor of Bilal Boarding where 6 students died in a fire Sunday, has said all the students have been withdrawn from the school following the incident.

“This fire accident has disturbed learning here and as I am speaking, I already lost all my students because all the parents came to collect their children out of the school”, he told The Standard.

Mr Jawara also disclosed that the victims are yet to be buried because the police are still investigating the incident. On the state of the injured ones, Jawara said: “Among the hospitalised students, one is currently in a very critical condition and doctors are not allowing us to see him”. He added that others are to be transferred to Senegal for treatment based on their condition.

Jawara repeated that the incident was most unfortunate and shocking “because there are no switches in the room that can cause the fire”.

Meanwhile, the UNICEF country office has issued a statement expressing shock over the incident and called on the authorities to investigate the matter that has caused so much trauma to families.
Momodou Posted - 19 Oct 2021 : 10:39:48
Statement by UNICEF on the fire incident at the Bilal Boarding School

Banjul, 18 October 2021

UNICEF is deeply saddened by the death of five children from the fire incident at the Bilal Boarding School in Yarambamba, West Coast Region, on October 17th, 2021.

The incident also left seven other children injured and hospitalized, some in critical condition.
We send our deepest condolences to the families, friends and peers of all victims of the incident.

Children who witnessed the incident may also be traumatized by what they saw and the loss of friends, and may need urgent psycho-social support as they recover from the shock.

We urge national and local authorities to launch a thorough investigation into the incident to establish the exact cause of the fire and the circumstances around the incident.

This investigation will be important in ensuring accountability and the implementation of stronger mechanisms to safeguard the security and safety of children in schools, especially those in boarding schools.

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