Connect with us

African News

Mom played dead after gunmen killed kids in Cape Town slaying

Published

on

Bianca Alexander played dead after she was shot when three gunmen barged into a home in Clarke Estate in the middle of the night and opened fire. When her assailants ran out of ammunition, she and her injured friend fled their Elsies River dwelling in which their children had just been killed.

“She told me she had begged for their lives, but they shot anyway,” her brother, Jayson Alexander, told News24 after visiting her at Tygerberg Hospital.

Bianca and her friend, Mandy Samuels, 31, were the only survivors of the massacre on Tuesday night, which saw three children and a teenager die in a hail of bullets.

Jayson, who lives in the wendy house next door to where the bloodbath occurred behind Northmead Court, said the two women only survived because their assailants had run out of bullets.

Jayson Alexander next to one of the bullet holes.

Jayson Alexander next to one of the bullet holes. (Tammy Petersen, News24)

“She told me she had heard one of the shooters say, ‘finish them’. But when they aimed and fired, the gun was empty. They had been reloading when they made a run for it, this after Bianca had already been shot in the back and Mandy in the back and leg.”

Bianca’s son, Adrian “AJ” Alexander, 12, had been shot in the neck, while Samuel’s son, Malcolm Junior “MJ” Samuels, 12, was shot in the face. The boys had fallen asleep on a couch opposite the doorway. A bullet hole and blood spatter could still be seen on the nearby washing machine.

Vineto Africa, 19, was killed after being shot in the face while lying on a bed in the same room as the boys. He is believed to have been the target of the shooting.

Samuel’s daughter Toslin, 10, had been lying on the bed with the two women when the shooters forced their way in, Jayson said. She too died instantly.

Toslin and Malcolm Junior “MJ” Samuels, 12. (Suppl

Toslin and Malcolm Junior “MJ” Samuels, 12. (Supplied)

An injured Samuels had rolled from the bed when the bullets started raining in the rickety three-roomed structure.

According to locals, close to 50 shots had gone off.

Jayson said he had been at work when his wife phoned him about the volley of bullets being fired next door.

“She told our kids to lie on the ground until she eventually heard them run away. The shooters shot at Mandy and Bianca as they ran and also shot at one of the windows where someone had screamed when they realised what was happening. They wanted no witnesses.”

Three men were arrested within hours of the shooting. They will appear in the local magistrate’s court once charged.

Adrian “AJ” Alexander, 12. (Supplied)

Adrian “AJ” Alexander, 12. (Supplied)

Samuel’s mother-in-law, Rachel Klink, wept for her two grandchildren who she had seen just hours before they were murdered. It was on her door in Northmead Court that a bleeding Samuels had banged and called for help that night.

“When my son opened the door he asked her what was going on. She screamed, ‘The children are dead!’ and collapsed.”

Klink, 67, had run to Samuel’s home, where she discovered the lifeless children. She cried as she showed the positions she found them in.

“They came to visit me every day. Junior would sometimes sleep over, Toslin would be in and out of my house.”

Klink’s son, Malcolm, died last year following an asthma attack. MJ and Toslin had been his only children.

“Now I lost everything I had of him [Malcolm], my second youngest son.”

Ouma Rachel Klink lost two grandchildren in the ma

Ouma Rachel Klink lost two grandchildren in the massacre. With her is Reverend Dorothea Gopie of the ANC Western Cape Chaplaincy. (Tammy Petersen, News24) 

On Wednesday, residents set the blood-soaked bed and couch that the children had been murdered on alight. It had been riddled with bullet holes.

Elsies River is one of 10 areas in the Western Cape with the highest attempted murder rates, where the army was deployed to help in joint operations with the police.

On Monday, the Presidency announced President Cyril Ramaphosa had extended the South African National Defence Force’s stay until March 31, 2020. The original two-month deployment was meant to end on Monday.

ANC MP Faiez Jacobs consoled the two families on Thursday, saying suffering communities no longer wanted only the army, but also justice.

Flanked by religious leaders, who came to pray for the victims, Jacobs said he was pleased by the police’s swift response in arresting the suspects.

They should not be released on bail, he insisted.

“We ask our judges to not show leniency to child killers,” Jacobs said, amid murmurs of agreement.

The wendy house behind Northmead Court in Clarke E

The wendy house behind Northmead Court in Clarke Estate where three children and a teenager were killed on Tuesday night. (Tammy Petersen, News24)

Western Cape SA Human Rights Commission commissioner Chris Nissen joined traumatised residents as they sang hymns outside the murder scene on Thursday.

He said combating crime was not only the police’s responsibility.

“We know who the gangsters are, but we keep quiet. There are mothers who know the gun that their son has is illegal, but they don’t talk about it. When your laaitie comes home wearing new Nikes and you know he’s not working, why are you not questioning him?” Nissen asked.

“We must stand up and speak out.”

Source link

قالب وردپرس

African News

Vaping nearly killed me, says British teenager

Published

on

By

Ewan FisherImage copyright
Ewan Fisher

A teenage boy nearly died after vaping caused a catastrophic reaction in his lungs, doctors in Nottingham say.

Ewan Fisher was connected to an artificial lung to keep him alive after his own lungs failed and he could not breathe.

Ewan told BBC News e-cigarettes had “basically ruined me” and urged other young people not to vape.

His doctors say vaping is “not safe”, although health bodies in the UK say it is 95% safer than tobacco.

Listen: Beyond Today – Can vaping kill you?

What happened?

Ewan started vaping in early 2017. He was 16 at the time and wanted to quit smoking to improve his boxing.

Despite being under age, he said, “it was easy” to buy either cigarettes or e-cigarettes.

In May that year, Ewan was finding it harder and harder to breathe.

His mother took Ewan to accident and emergency on the night before his GCSE exams, because he was coughing and choking in his sleep.

His lungs were failing and he very quickly ended up on life-support in intensive care in Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham.

“I thought I was going to die,” Ewan told BBC News.

Ewan was getting worse. Even ventilation could not get enough oxygen into his body and his life was in the balance.

Image copyright
Ewan Fisher

Image caption

Ewan was attached to an ECMO machine to keep him alive

He was taken to Leicester and attached to an artificial lung or ECMO (extra-corporeal membrane oxygenation) machine.

“This machine saved my life,” he said.

Large tubes took blood out of Ewan, removed the carbon dioxide, added oxygen and pumped the blood back into his body.

“He had very serious respiratory failure, he had to go to ECMO and that is a very big deal,” Dr Jayesh Bhatt, a consultant at Nottingham University Hospitals, told BBC News.

“He got as ill as anyone can get.”

The case – from May 2017 – has just come to light in the journal Archives of Disease in Childhood.

How is Ewan now?

Ewan, who is 19 on Tuesday, had a long recovery. It was six months before he was properly up and on his feet again.

“I’m still not back to normal, I’d say 75-80%, it’s in the last six months that I’m feeling a bit stronger in myself,” he said.

“Vaping has basically ruined me, I try to tell everyone and they think I’m being stupid, I tell my mates and they don’t listen.

“They still do it, they all still vape, but they’ve seen what I’ve been through.

“Is it worth risking your life for smoking e-cigs?

“I don’t want you to end up like me and I don’t want you to be dead, I wouldn’t wish [that] on anyone.”

Ewan also fears being around other vapers – everywhere from the pub to High Street – could damage his lungs again.

Is vaping to blame?

His doctors say the answer is yes.

Ewan developed a condition called hypersensitivity pneumonitis – something he was breathing in was setting off his immune system, with catastrophic consequences.

“You get an over-exuberant inflammatory response and the lungs pay a price and develop respiratory failure,” Dr Bhatt said.

One of the most common forms of hypersensitivity pneumonitis is “bird fancier’s lung”, which is caused by particles from feathers or bird droppings.

When scientists tested the two e-cigarette liquids Ewan had been using, they found one of them was triggering an immune reaction.

Dr Bhatt said: “The real learning point is vaping is not safe, especially for young people, they should never go near it.

“We consider e-cigarettes as ‘much safer than tobacco’ at our peril.”

Image copyright
Getty Images

How common is this?

There are 3.6 million people vaping in the UK and reactions like this are rare.

However, doctors have told BBC News Ewan’s case is not an isolated incident.

“As vaping becomes more popular, we are beginning to see more cases,” Dr Hemant Kulkarni, a consultant in paediatric respiratory medicine at Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, said.

He told BBC News: “Some of the cases my colleagues and I have seen are teenagers presenting with severe lung injury and some of these have been life-threatening.

“However, in the cases I’ve been involved in, patients are now regaining normal lung function.”

Dr Kulkarni is “surprised” e-cigarettes are advertised in the UK, given the severe reaction they can cause in children and a lack of scientific studies on their safety.

Is vaping dangerous?

Smoking is pretty much the worst thing you can do for your health.

E-cigarettes are promoted in the UK as a way to quit because they let people inhale nicotine in vapour rather than breathing in smoke.

Ewan’s reaction to vaping was extreme, but what about the rest of us who would not end up with hypersensitivity pneumonitis?

Public Health England says vaping is 95% safer than smoking but is not without risks.

Rosanna O’ Connor, the body’s director of drugs, alcohol and tobacco, said: “Smoking kills half of lifelong smokers and accounts for almost 220 deaths in England every day.

“Our advice remains that while not completely risk free, UK regulated e-cigarettes carry a fraction of the risk of smoked tobacco.”

But there are arguments about how safe vaping really is.

The World Health Organization says e-cigarettes are “undoubtedly harmful and should therefore be subject to regulation”.

It also raises concerns vaping is being aggressively marketed at young people – particularly through the use of flavourings – and risked re-normalising smoking.

Is Ewan’s case similar to those in the US?

The deaths of 39 people in the US have been connected to vaping and have prompted worldwide concern about its safety.

There have been 2,051 cases of e-cigarette, or vaping, product use associated lung injury (called EVALI) in the outbreak.

Most of those cases, but not all, have been linked to vaping THC, the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.

Ewan was vaping standard e-cigarettes bought from a shop.

What do experts says?

Dr Nick Hopkinson, the medical director of the British Lung Foundation, said: “If people switch completely from smoking to vaping, they will substantially reduce their health risk as e-cigarettes do not contain tobacco and any harmful components are present at a much lower level.

“People who do switch should try to quit vaping in the long term too but not at the expense of relapsing to smoking – and non-smokers should not take up vaping.”

Prof John Britton, the director of the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies, at the University of Nottingham, said: “This is worrying, and the risk needs to be acknowledged, but in absolute terms it is extremely small and, crucially, far smaller than that of smoking.

“The advice remains the same: if you smoke, switch to vaping; if you don’t smoke, don’t vape.”

Follow James on Twitter.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

African News

England v Montenegro: Raheem Sterling to miss Euro 2020 qualifier at Wembley

Published

on

By

England team-mates Joe Gomez and Raheem Sterling during Sunday’s Premier League match at Anfield, where Liverpool beat Manchester City 3-1

England forward Raheem Sterling will not play in the Euro 2020 qualifier against Montenegro on Thursday “as a result of a disturbance in a private team area”, the Football Association has announced.

The 24-year-old Manchester City player was involved in an on-field argument with Liverpool and England defender Joe Gomez, 22, during the Reds’ 3-1 Premier League victory at Anfield.

“Unfortunately the emotions of yesterday’s game were still raw,” said England boss Gareth Southgate.

“One of the great challenges and strengths for us is that we’ve been able to separate club rivalries from the national team.

“We have taken the decision to not consider Raheem for the match against Montenegro on Thursday. My feeling is that the right thing for the team is the action we have taken.

“Now that the decision has been made with the agreement of the entire squad, it’s important that we support the players and focus on Thursday night.”

England play their 1,000th senior men’s international on Thursday and a win at Wembley would book a spot at Euro 2020 with one qualifying game to spare.

The Three Lions are top of Euro 2020 Qualifying Group A, three points clear of the Czech Republic and four ahead of Kosovo with the top two nations advancing.

A win for Southgate’s side will see them qualify, while a point will also be enough if the match between the Czech Republic and Kosovo also ends in a draw.

England then play their final group match away in Kosovo on Thursday, 17 November.

More to follow.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

African News

Russia throws more weight behind Haftar in Libya

Published

on

By