World, Africa

Over 200 killed in Nigeria church collapse

Worshippers were attending ordination for church’s founder

11.12.2016
Over 200 killed in Nigeria church collapse FILE PHOTO

By Rafiu Ajakaye

LAGOS, Nigeria

At least 200 people have been confirmed dead and hundreds others injured in Saturday afternoon's collapse of a church in Nigeria’s southern Akwa Ibom state, according to a top medical official. 

“Many victims are in private hospitals and mortuaries scattered all over Uyo; we can’t really tell how many people have died so far. We have over 200 people in the mortuaries here,” Etete Peters, chief medical director at the government hospital in Uyo, said late Saturday. 

Peters said at least 50 wounded were brought to the hospital.

Police has yet to disclose casualty figures.

A service to ordain as bishop the church's founder, Pastor Akan Week, was in progress at the time of the collapse. It was attended by the state's top government officials and thousands of worshippers from across the region. 

Building collapses are common in Nigeria, often with deadly consequences. A total of 115 worshippers were killed, including 85 South Africans, when a guesthouse collapsed at a megachurch in 2014 in southwestern Lagos.

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