The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has said the three children who died after their parents sprayed a fumigant tablet lost their lives through the inhalation of a pesticide, Topstoxin
The fumigation tablet, Topstoxin, the FDA said is a pesticide used for the control of insects in stored grain, process food and feeds.
The children, nine-month-old twin girls and their two-year-old brother, died at the 37 Military Hospital last Friday night.
They had ingested a deadly substance called organo-phosphate found in a product called Topstoxin, a fumigation tablet for the control of insects in stored grain, processed food and feeds, and neighbours rushed them and their parents to the 37 Military Hospital for medical care.
The incident occurred after one of the parents had sprayed their home with the poisonous substance to get rid of cockroaches.
A statement signed by Mr James Lartey, the Head of Communications, FDA and copied to the Ghana News Agency, said preliminary checks by the FDA had revealed that the family used the said pesticide (Topstoxin) which had aluminium phosphide as its active ingredient.
The statement said the FDA immediately dispatched officers as part of its safety monitoring activities to the 37 Military Hospital, where the kids died on Friday, to ascertain the cause of their death.
“Aluminium phosphide is used as a fumigant to protect stored grains from insects and rodents, which makes the product an agrochemical and not a household chemical,” the statement said.
‘’In the presence of moisture, aluminium phosphide releases phosphine which is highly toxic, it added.
The statement said although the product is an agro chemical, which does not fall under the regulations of the FDA, it is liaising with the Environmental Protection Agency and the Agriculture Ministry to investigate the source and distribution channels for the product.
Meanwhile, the FDA has admonished the general public to carefully read the labels of all products and follow the direction before using or consuming any regulated products to avoid injuries and allergies which may lead to deaths.
‘’The general public is also being entreated to inform the FDA of any regulated products found on the market which does not comply to the standards.