The Government has donated GH¢200,000 to victims of the Church building collapse at Akyem Batabi in the Asene-Manso-Akroso District of the Eastern Region.

The Vice President Dr. Mahamadu Bawumia who led a delegation to the community Sunday as part of his three day campaign tour of the Eastern Region announced.

He commiserated with the survivors and the bereaved families at a durbar and pledged the support of government to the family in this difficult moment.

“This donation is just for starters, and then we shall see the way forward. The DCE shall oversee the sharing of the money,” Dr. Bawumia said

The Chief of Akyem Batabi, Barima Oppong Kyekyeku II, was grateful to Government for the kind gesture. He assured that the people of the area support the second term bid of President Akufo Addo.

Background

The collapse of the uncompleted three-storey church building occurred Tuesday October 20, 2020 at about 2:30 pm.

Prophet Akoa Isaac has told Police in his statement after his arrest that he was sick and lying in his residence on the same compound of the Church when he heard the collapsing of the church.

He said he was told that about 56 worshippers were in and around the building fasting and praying when the incident happened.

According to one of the survivors

“We were resting in the church building after fasting and prayers so whilst resting, we heard portions of the building coming down. We were over 60 in the building so we started running away some of the people managed to escape but others were trapped “

Rescue Operation

The Rescue Team made up of personnel from the National Disaster Management Organization, NADMO, Military, Ghana National Fire Service, Police, Ambulance Service, BNI,GHS, National Security and some volunteers ended the four-day rescue operation on Friday October 23,2020.

Thirty victims were retrieved as of Friday, October 23,2020, when the operation was brought to a close. 22 of them had died, while eight survived.

The deceased were made up of 12 women, 9 men and a girl child.

The Ghana Air Force provided the sniffer dogs during the early hours of Friday to check for possible bodies covered by the debris.

The team searched thoroughly for the last victim- a woman reported missing but was not found under the rubble hence Church leaders have been asked to inform the National Disaster Management Organisation, NADMO, whenever they smell a stench from the disaster scene.

Decommissioning the rescue team, the Director-General of the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), Eric Nana Agyeman Prempeh commended the rescue team made up of 210 Personnel from various security agencies, and operators of four excavators, 7 haulage tipper Truck vehicles and 2 payloaders for working tirelessly.

He charged bodies responsible for regulating the construction of buildings to intensify their monitoring regimes to enable them proactively avert the re-occurrence of such incident.

Some residents say construction of the Church building started in 1996 hence its structural integrity continued to weaken.

Source: Starr FM