Chrisland: How my daughter died – Mother, Lagos shuts down school

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In response to the death of Whitney Adeniran, a pupil at Chrisland International School, the Lagos State Government has taken action to investigate the circumstances surrounding the tragedy.

The school has been ordered to shut down temporarily pending the outcome of the investigation.

Whitney Adeniran, a pupil at Chrisland International School
Whitney Adeniran, a pupil at Chrisland International School

According to the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotoso, “We are investigating the matter but as a first step, we are going to shut down the school (Chrisland) tomorrow (Monday) to allow for a full investigation.” The Commissioner for Education, Mrs Folasadee Adefisayo, has reportedly reached out to Whitney’s father to offer condolences.

The events that led to Whitney’s death on Thursday, February 9th at the Agege stadium during the school’s inter-house sports are still being pieced together. Eyewitnesses, the school, and the attending doctor claim that Whitney died of cardiac arrest, while Whitney’s father, Michael, disputes this account and has told the BBC Pidgin that his daughter was electrocuted.

Michael stated, “She (Whitney) died from a naked wire from one cotton candy vendor machine. After she touched it, she was electrocuted immediately. I have documented evidence that my child died of electrocution and not cardiac arrest as Chrisland School claimed.”

Whitney’s mother, Blessing, spoke out about the events leading up to her daughter’s death during the school’s inter-house sports at the Agege stadium. In a heart-wrenching video, Blessing recounted out her account of the tragedy.

She revealed that she was initially unaware of Whitney’s whereabouts during the sports event, saying, “When the boy said the school bus took her (Whitney), I ran out and met a staff member coming towards me and he said Whitney fell. I said I learned she fell and he said I should not worry, she would be fine and they have taken her to the hospital.”

Blessing’s concern was only exacerbated by the lack of emergency provisions on the grounds, despite the presence of over 500 students and 100 parents. She stated, “No ambulance, no doctor, no nurse, there was no emergency provision on the ground in a place where you have over 500 students and 100 parents.”

After a frantic search, Blessing finally located the hospital where Whitney was taken, but she found her daughter already dead. “I brought my phone and put it on Google map and typed Agege Central Hospital and it was not showing, what I saw was Agege Central Mosque. I said ‘Ma, it is not showing’ and she said ‘don’t worry, just ask around and they will tell you.’ We drove out of the stadium to the gate and asked the gatemen and they didn’t know.”

Tragically, Whitney was pronounced dead at the hospital, and Blessing observed that Whitney’s lips and tongue had turned black.

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