At least nine pupils have been hospitalized in South Africa after they ate space cakes sold by another student.
Panyaza Lesufi, the Education Member of the Executive Council of the Gauteng province, has reported that approximately fifteen Grade 12 learners from two high schools bought cakes cooked with marijuana, ate them and became sick. Two of them were sent home, thirteen others were hospitalized on April 7 and April 9, one of whom was in a critical condition but is now stable.
The MEC shared he was “concerned with the ongoing trend of learners consuming ‘space cakes’” in a media statement on April 10.
Grade 12 learners in South Africa are in their final year of high school and are usually between 17 and 18 years old. The two schools are located in the suburbs of Johannesburg.
In the Randfontein High School in the West Rand, the eleven who felt sick bought space cakes from another Grade 12 learner. The student who sold the cakes is now facing suspension as a result of breaking the school’s code of conduct and endangering the lives of his fellow learners.
According to the Sowetan LIVE, a parent whose child fell sick from a space cake has claimed they bought them thinking to support their classmate in buying a jacket for his matric dance, the dance prom for the last year of school.
In the Mamellong Secondary School in Tsakane, about 80 km (50 mi) from the other school, the four pupils are thought to have bought space cakes on their way to tuition classes.
The MEC said the “conditions of these learners is being closely monitored to ensure their speedy recovery and safe return to their families”.