15 women, 20 children rescued, 50 others feared trapped as church collapses in Delta
Fifty children were feared trapped when a storey building housing a satellite church of Salvation Ministries collapsed, yesterday, during evening service at Okpanam in Oshimili North Local Council of Delta State.
The Guardian learnt that the church, which belongs to Pastor David Ibiyeomie, caved in while service was going on about 5:16p.m.
It was gathered that the 10-year-old building was initially designed as a plaza before the church occupied the upper chamber and started to reshape it to suit its purpose.
It finally caved in, while it was undergoing reconstructions by the new owner, who allegedly bought the building at the rate of N300 million.
A church member, identified herself as Grace, said service was ongoing when the building collapsed with a thunderous noise.
‘’We were clapping and praying when suddenly we heard the cracking and the building swallowed the children section.
“The church is currently observing its New Year 21 day fasting, but members of the ill-fated church came to break the day fasting with a communion service,” she said.
Men of the Delta State Emergency Management Agency, fire service and the state police command formed the rescue team as trapped children were crying under the debris of the collapsed building.
About 15 women and 20 children have been rescued, but it could not be immediately ascertained whether they were still alive as they were being rolled into ambulances.
A woman, who was wailing beyond control at the scene, said her three children were among those trapped in the building.