The family of the three brothers poisoned, allegedly by their father, are preparing to bury the siblings as police continue their investigations into the matter.
The children, aged six to 16, from the Ratanda Primary and Secondary School succumbed to stomach aches after drinking energy drinks, allegedly given to them by their father.
Two of the boys passed away at school, while the third died on the way to the hospital.
The fourth child is currently in a critical condition in hospital.
Following a visit by Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi, the family revealed that the father made four of his five sons and even their dog consume the concocted drinks.
Lesufi said he was deeply saddened and is lost for words about what happened.
“It is unusual to lose three children at the same time. Sadly, we have found ourselves in this situation and we need to remain strong.”
“It’s very difficult to go to a family not carrying a report card to tell them about how their children are performing at school.
“But to carry a report that will prepare them to issue a death certificate is a very painful exercise. I’ve been doing this for the last few weeks and it’s starting to affect some of us because it is not easy to confront a family and explain what has happened. They also need help, it’s not an easy thing,” Lesufi said.
The father – who is still under police guard in hospital – is facing charges of murder and attempted murder and is expected to make a court appearance as soon as he regains consciousness.
Police said the matter is still under investigation as forensic specialists determine what claimed their lives.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Brenda Muridili said they had opened cases of murder and attempted murder.
“We will await the postmortem results which will determine the exact cause of death.”
Since January, there have been 15 pupil deaths and four deaths of teachers in different incidents in the province.