Calamity occurred in Uyo, Capital of Akwa Ibom State on Saturday as a church building collapsed killing over 200 people who had thronged there to witness the celebration of the ordination of the pastor of Reigners Bible Church international incorporated Pastor Akan Weeks in Uyo. It was a special service held to commemorate the ordination of the presiding pastor to a bishop.
Eye witnesses confirmed that the massive Auditorium made up of corrugated aluminum roofing supported by steel pillars gave way immediately it was time for offering. Among the Dignitaries that grace the occasion and were caught in the mishap was the state Governor Udom Emmanuel who was saves by the whiskers.
It is widely reported that the Governor was saved by his security personnel who move very swiftly to protect him from the falling iron pillars.
It is also gathered that many dignitaries who accompanied the governor to the event are feared to have died. Many others top government officials including the secretary to the state government suffered severe injuries and are being treated in an undisclosed hospital.
Among the institutions whose members are most affected is the University of Uyo, where it is believed many of its students and staffs attended the occasion. Our correspondents reported that many frantic parents whose wards are in the school have besieged the school to confirm their safety.
It is also reported that the sad incident took the medical community in the state unawares as the hospitals in the state especially in Uyo could not cope with the number of corpses brought to be deposited. The University of Uyo teaching Hospital mortuary along Abak road was said to be filled to the brim as over 100 corpses are said to have been deposited there.
It is believed that over 200 people might have died as a result of the tragedy. The cause of the disaster has not yet been ascertain however our correspondent said that part of the expansive building was rushed shortly before the sad day possible because of the ceremony and it is not unlikely that the contractor might have compromise quality work in place of expediency.
Meanwhile, the State governor who narrowly escape from the tragedy and live to tell the tale has promised to set up a high powered commission of inquiry to ascertain the immediate and remote factors that led to the incident and promised that no stone would be left upturned to unravel the cause. He had subsequently ordered the arrest of the contractor who handled the building project.