Church Collapse Tragedy: A/Ibom Govt Appeals For Financial Assistance

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By: PATRICK TITUS, Uyo.
Arising from last Saturday incident that claimed many lives in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom state government has appealed to corporate organizations, spirited public individuals and groups to contribute to medical care of victims who are receiving treatment in ten hospitals across the state.
A release from the office of Chief Press Secretary to state governor, Mr. Ekerette Udo said the appeal became necessary in view of the magnitude of the tragedy and the enormous resources required to give adequate medical attention to the injured.
Special assistant to the governor on public affairs, Mr. Raphael Edem who read the text of release to journalists in Uyo said such contributions should be channeled to the AKSG Account Number 1010389604 with the Zenith Bank Plc., adding that the proceeds would be judiciously used.
Government has also called on those who are yet to locate their love ones to contact the information centre at the state ministry of health through GSM Number 08035432236; 08023176595.
The release also indicated an increased in deaths toll from 23 persons earlier confirmed to 26 currently, just as 30 persons have been treated and discharged.
“Initially, it was difficult to ascertain the state of health of many of the victims as they were taken to various hospitals all over the city to forestall stretching the manpower and equipment of some hospitals beyond the limits of professional competence.
However, after making the rounds of all the hospitals concerned, and in consultation with officials of the health and security services who were directly involved in the rescue operations, the figure we have been able to reconcile indicate that 26 people passed on as a result of this incident. There are few unreconciled cases of not more than three persons and we are working to reconcile these figures as soon as possible”, the release stated.
According to the release, family members demanding to claim corpses of their love ones who died in the incident have been requested to exercise patience.  Their demand would be granted as soon as the security agencies conclude their investigations in line with the standard practice under the circumstances.
Meanwhile, government has directed that henceforth, only public buildings which have passed the necessary safety certifications would be allowed to host public events in the state.
To ensure adherence, government has put in place machinery to streamline the processes involved in the monitoring and enforcement of relevant building regulations in the state, with regard to public buildings to ensure that they met professional standards. This is to forestall future occurrence of such tragedy in the state.
It would be recalled that the Reigners Bible Church building collapsed on Saturday and killed many worshipers and left many in critical health conditions at various hospitals in the state. The incident occurred during the bishopric ordination of the founder of the church, Apostle Akan Weeks.

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