Petrol generator Carbon monoxide

It has emerged that Carbon monoxide poisoning was the likely cause of the death of 21 teenagers at Enyobeni Tavern in Scenery Park, East London on Sunday.

Sources close to the investigation told News24 they believe the children – aged 13 to 17 – were killed by toxic fumes emanating from a petrol generator suspected to have been used inside the tavern.

ALSO READ: Enyobeni Tavern shut down as SAHRC probes deaths of minors

According to the news website, preliminary results of post-mortem examinations conducted on the victims found traces of carbon monoxide.

It is understood a well-informed investigator said police crime scene experts found an empty petrol generator inside the venue in East London where the tragedy occurred.

The Eastern Cape health department has confirmed forensic experts are doing a further analysis of samples the department sent to the University of Cape Town.

The final autopsy results are expected to be announced on Wednesday or Thursday.

The South African Police Service (Saps) also confirmed the deployment of maximum resources to investigate the deaths of 21 teenagers at Enyobeni Tavern.

Meanwhile, as the families of the 21 teens mourn their loss, the Royal House of Mandela says it is time for a total ban on alcohol in communities.

It says the tragic deaths are not isolated cases and calls for more decisive action and a total ban on alcohol in order to save lives and prevent a repeat of the tragedy.

In the statement, Zwelivelile Mandla Mandela, Nelson Mandela’s grandson, said alcohol consumption exacerbates grave underlying issues in communities.

“The North West Province case is still fresh in our minds where a girl in the company of her male friend was accosted by six drunken minors between the ages of 14 and 17 and repeatedly gang-raped from 7pm until 4am the next morning.”

At the same time, the Eastern Cape Liquor Board (ECLB) says it will lay criminal charges against the owner of the Enyobeni Tavern at Scenery Park following the death of the teenagers.