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Saturday, 10 December 2016

At least, Fifty People dead as church building collapses in Akwa Ibom

Tragedy struck Saturday in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital when a church building belonging to Reigners Bible Church International, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, collapsed killing scores and wounded several others.

According to an eyewitness, the incident occurred at around 11am during a special service: “Bishopric Enthronement”, to mark the ordination of its resident pastor, Akan Weeks.

As at the time when the building collapsed, eyewitnesses say the church was filled to the brim and the incident occurred shortly after the offering session, a development that brought the event to an end.
Governor Udom Emmanuel alongside some of his commissioners who were billed to attend the function were on their way when the building collapsed.
When Sunday Nation visited the scene, the governor was seen helping in the rescue operation as many worshippers were trapped under the debris as rescue team evacuate the dead and those that were injured.

An eyewitness said: “This is a disaster. Why today? People have been rushed to hospital while many have been trapped under the structure.”
Security agents comprising men of the Nigeria Police Force: Nigerian Army; Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC and officials of the Federal Road a Safety Corps, FRSC, were seen condoling off the area to save the lives of those they were injured.
Also officials of the Red Cross were seen attending to some of the worshippers with minor injuries.
When contacted, the FRSC’s Spokesman in the state, Mr. Godsgift Uwen, said officials of the commission were currently at the scene of incident.

When asked the number of casualties resulting from the collapsed building, Uwen said he was not competent to speak on that but ordered Sunday Nation to get the reaction from the Police.
He said: “I am not competent to give you information on this matter for now. I will advise you call the Police Public Relations officer.”

Speaking on the development, the State’s Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Cordelia Nwawe, could not confirm the number of casualties.
She said: “This is a very unfortunate incident. The governor is safe. A lot of the people are safe. People have been rushed to the hospital. By evening, we will be able to talk about the number of casualties. We are here to ensure that hoodlums do not take over the place.”


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