No update on church collapse DNA - govt

2014-10-30 11:51
The site of the Nigeria church collapse. (File: AP)

The site of the Nigeria church collapse. (File: AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - There has been no update on the DNA analysis of the 116 victims of the church building collapse in Nigeria, government said on Thursday.

"We still have not been given an update. We know that the DNA is at a lab in Cape Town. We still have not been given any information on how far the process is," said Phumla Williams, speaking on behalf of the inter-ministerial task team on Nigeria.

"The lab reports directly to Nigerian authorities, so the information depends on them."

She said a media briefing would be held to provide details on the repatriation of the South African victims' remains once information was available.

Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe announced on 23 October that the DNA samples arrived at a laboratory in South Africa for analysis.

Radebe was not able to say how long this process would take.

"Only when the DNA analysis has been finalised will our government be able to conclusively identify South Africans from among the 116 people who died in this incident," he said.

It is believed 85 people from South Africa were among those killed when a multi-storey guesthouse attached to the Synagogue Church of All Nations, run by Nigerian preacher TB Joshua, collapsed in Lagos on 12 September.

The National Joint Intelligence Structure had agreed that on announcement of release of the bodies, an advanced team - comprising officials of the National Disaster Management Centre, the SA Military Health Service, the national health department, and the SA Police Service's forensic service - would go to Lagos.

"The advance team will finalise all necessary and administrative processes and prepare the mortal remains for their final journey back home," Radebe said at the time.

"The intricate preparatory work may take up to seven days to complete from the time of the team's arrival in Lagos.

"From Waterkloof, the mortal remains will be transported by road to their respective provinces, where families will proceed with their own funeral arrangements."

Read more on:    tb joshua  |  jeff radebe  |  pretoria  |  nigeria  |  west africa  |  nigeria building collapse

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.