Injured church collapse victims discharged

By Drum Digital
06 November 2014

Most of the South Africans injured in the church building collapse in Nigeria have been discharged from hospital, government said on Thursday.

"Of the 21 injured South Africans who were repatriated, there are only six patients who are still receiving treatment and care at the Steve Biko Academic hospital," a government spokeswoman Phumla Williams said.

A guest house belonging to the Synagogue Church Of All Nations in Lagos, headed by preacher TB Joshua, collapsed on September 12, killing 116 people. Eighty-five of them were from South Africa.

The remains of those killed were still in Nigeria. DNA samples being used to identify the bodies were at a laboratory in Cape Town.

Williams said the wait for the families of the deceased was heart-breaking.

"While we do not as yet know when the Nigerian authorities will announce the release of the mortal remains positively identified to be South African, we have to maintain high levels of readiness," she said.

A team had been sent to Lagos to prepare to receive the bodies. Government would continue providing updates to the relatives of those killed.

Williams encouraged the families to continue making use of grief counselling services provided by the social development department.

-SAPA

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