Man dies, another injured as church building collapses

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A church building under construction in Mogoditshane had a portion of its wall collapse this past Saturday killing a man and injuring another.

The church belonged to the Mission to the World Ministries International Church, and according to the pastor, it was the second time the building collapsed, though in the first incident there were no injuries or casualties. 

Last Thursday, or two days before the deadly collapse, a freak storm proved too strong for a chunk of the wall, which collapsed. Miraculously, there was no injury. However, while the Thursday incident was still fresh in the minds of the worshippers, a more painful incident happened on Saturday afternoon as another portion of the wall collapsed, resulting in the death of a worker and injury to his colleague.

Mogoditshane police station commander superintendent Nkwebi Chilisa confirmed the incident, saying they received a report about a wall that collapsed on Saturday afternoon.

“ Apparently, there were two people on site when this happened. Unfortunately, the wall fell on them and one died while the other was admitted with serious injuries,” he said. Chilisa could not provide further details, as he said investigations into the matter were still ongoing.

Pastor Ike Makiwa of the Mission to the World Ministries International Church was still in shock when The Monitor contacted him. But, reluctantly  he said this was an unfortunate incident. “Just when we thought we were dealing with the collapse of the other portion, another serious and more painful one happened,” was all Makiwa could say.

In an earlier interview following the collapse of the first portion on Thursday, Makiwa had accused  the construction company of having done a shoddy job.“I can’t tell exactly what happened because I am not a constructor. This question needs someone with technical expertise.

“But in our conversation with the constructor, he said when they were building, they were supposed to put two supporting pillars from inside going to the outside, but instead the pillars were only put inside.

“So since the side that collapsed is tall, the strength of the pillars was not enough to support the structure. We cannot build a slaughter house. These things happen. The wall just fell. I cannot always be on site to supervise construction,” he said. According to the pastor, the building is a property of the church and was approved by the Town and Regional Planning Department.

Last year, a building collapsed at the Synagogue Church of All Nations in Lagos, Nigeria claiming the lives of people including many South Africans.

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