Part of Joburg church collapses after it ignored warnings

2014-10-08 16:44

A newly built section of a Johannesburg church has collapsed after the church ignored instructions to stop construction.

“We received a call at 7.48pm [yesterday],” Johannesburg Emergency Medical Services spokesperson Nana Radebe said.

“It was not the whole church; just the wall that forms part of the extension recently done,” she said.

No one was injured or reported missing.

On September 30, The Star quoted architect Marian Laserson as saying that construction at the Alleluia Ministries church in Lyndhurst was a disaster waiting to happen.

A second storey was being added to the church without building plans or approval from the City of Johannesburg, according to the newspaper. The church had ignored two warnings to stop building.

The church was operating illegally because the property it was situated on was not zoned as a place of worship. According to the city’s town-planning amendments scheme, it was not safe to build on the property.

Laserson, who had taken up the cause of neighbours trying since 2009 to stop church activities, said the foundations were waterlogged.

“It is a disaster waiting to happen. Hundreds of people attend that church every week. It is extremely dangerous,” she was quoted as saying at the time.

The church’s pastor, Alph Lukau, was not immediately available for comment.

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