Lagos coroner church collapse verdict soon

2015-03-04 05:00
Prophet TB Joshua

Prophet TB Joshua

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

Lagos - A Lagos coroner on Tuesday said he would within two weeks give his verdict into the causes of last year's deadly building collapse at the compound of the powerful Nigerian pastor TB Joshua.

Coroner Oyetade Komolafe has been probing the 12 September accident that killed 116 people, mostly South Africans, but the inquiry was stalled by a three-week judicial staff strike.

Komolafe said the court had been able to make up for "the lost ground" caused by the strike.

"Within the next two weeks, all witnesses in this matter would have given their evidence after which counsels to the parties will give their final addresses and the court will give its verdict," Komolafe told a hearing in Lagos.

He said the court will visit the Synagogue Church of All Nations compound for further inspection before issuing its findings.

Joshua, a popular evangelical preacher and televangelist known to his followers as "The Prophet", has attributed the collapse to sabotage.

The pastor, who counts presidents and powerful politicians from across Africa among his flock, has claimed that the collapse was caused by a mysterious plane seen "hovering" over the building at the time.

But Lagos officials and expert witnesses have ruled out the theory of aerial sabotage or an explosion.

The hearing has been told instead that the guest house did not have planning permission and that a number of other buildings at the church were structurally unsound.

The self-styled miracle worker has repeatedly refused to appear before the inquest to give evidence with his lawyers challenging the coroner's power to summon him.

At Tuesday's hearing, the church's chief security officer, Sunday Okojie disputed a claim by emergency officials that they were denied access to the site for three days following the collapse.

Okojie insisted rescue workers were given free access to the site but did not appear to be working urgently to save lives.

Read more on:    scoan  |  tb joshua  |  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.
NEXT ON NEWS24X 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

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.