File photo: Boys are seen during an initiation period.

North West -

North West police said on Saturday that there were investigating the death of a 17-year-old initiate in Christiana.

The boy was already dead when he was taken to the Utlwanang clinic in Christiana by the initiation school teacher on Friday around 9pm, said Captain Pelonomi Makau.

Police received a call from the clinic that the 17-year-old was brought to the clinic already dead, with no visible injuries.

A post-mortem would be performed on the boy's body to determine the cause of death.

“After police were alerted of the incident, they went to the initiation school situated in (the bush) in Christiana and found 83 initiates between the ages of 14 and 18-years-old who were from the surrounding areas,” she said.

They were all taken to the hospital for examination, with 35 admitted and the remaining 48 initiates discharged back into the care of the initiation school teacher, who claimed the school was legitimate.

The teacher could not produce legal documentation for the school, although he confirmed that he had authorisation from Lekwa Teemane local municipality to operate the school.

“Police requested him not to operate the school until he produced an alleged municipality authorisation by Saturday afternoon,” said Makau.

“An arrest will be made if the relevant documents are not produced as promised by the initiation school teacher.” - Sapa