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Two die in EC initiation school fire

Ten other initiates have been treated for smoke inhalation after the school caught alight earlier on Sunday morning, officials say.

FILE: A picture taken on 20 November 2009 of young boys from the Xhosa tribe attending a traditional initiation school in Libode in the Eastern Cape Province. Picture: AFP

CAPE TOWN – Two initiates have died in a fire at an initiation school in the Eastern Cape.

Twenty-five others including their traditional nurses have been taken to a nearby hospital.

Officials say the initiation school caught alight earlier on Sunday morning.

Ten initiates have been treated for smoke inhalation.

Eastern Cape Health Spokesperson Sizwe Kupelo says the total number of deaths during the winter initiation period, stands at four.

“We send our heartfelt condolences to the families of the deceased. This afternoon a group of police, traditional leaders and health officials will be conducting raids in East London where about 30 underage boys were illegally circumcised and shoelaces were used to dress their wounds.”