Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 June 2019

Dubai Police secure school after parent performs 'suspicious activity' on site

Pupils at Gems Wellington Academy on Al Khail Road were sent home on Wednesday

Police secured the premises of a school in Dubai on Wednesday after 'suspicious activity' by a parent was reported. Satish Kumar / The National
Police secured the premises of a school in Dubai on Wednesday after 'suspicious activity' by a parent was reported. Satish Kumar / The National

A school in Dubai was evacuated on Wednesday after the mother of a pupil entered the premises wearing a surgical mask and carrying cleaning detergent, which she left on site.

Classes at the Gems Wellington Academy will resume today, a representative said.

The woman entered the school at 11am using her parent access card. Police said the pupil’s mother was wearing a face mask and carried detergent because she wanted to teach the cleaners at the school how to “clean properly”.

Maj Gen Abdullah Al Marri of Dubai Police said that when the woman left the school, she left behind a liquid ­cleaning product. Police described it initially as “suspicious activity”.

But police also said the school caused “unnecessary panic” by sending texts to parents, telling them to collect their children, before calling the police.

Maj Gen Al Marri said there was no reason to be concerned. Col Faisal Al Qasim, director of security media at Dubai Police, criticised the school’s management and said the incident did not require such a response.

“The school management seems to have rushed sending messages, causing unnecessary panic among parents,” Dubai Police said on Twitter.

Officers went to the school to investigate and ensure the ­safety of pupils and staff. Maj Gen Al Marri said they seized the liquid left by the woman and confirmed its contents.

At about 1.30pm yesterday, police said the school was secure and pupils were not in any danger.

“All pupils and academic staff are perfectly safe,” they said on Twitter.

When The National visited the school at 2pm, there was heavy security roaming the area but parents and pupils had been sent home.

Maj Gen Al Marri said the woman was summoned for questioning.

“Gems Wellington Academy Al Khail will function as normal from Thursday following a minor occurrence. As the safety and security of our students and staff is our foremost priority, we suspended classes temporarily," the spokesperson from Gems Education said.

Col Al Qasim called on the public to disregard rumours regarding the safety and security of the emirate.

He said people should refer to the force’s official channels for reliable information.

Updated: June 12, 2019 10:20 PM

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