Joburg CBD Fire: Victims’ families to identify bodies from Friday
The Gauteng Health Department says forensic pathologists will use the digital fingerprint system to identify victims with visible fingerprints.
The families of those who lost their lives in the Johannesburg CBD fire will be allowed to identify their bodies from Friday, 1 September 2023, the Gauteng Health Department has said.
Authorities have confirmed that at least 74 people died in the blaze which broke out at a five-storey building on the corner of Delver and Albert streets, in the early hours of Thursday morning.
More than 40 people are reported to have been injured.
JOBURG CBD FIRE: FAMILIES TO RECEIVE COUNSELLING
The victims of the Johannesburg CBD fire have been taken to the Diepkloof mortuary in Soweto, which the provincial health department says will be open the entire weekend for families. It adds that the families will be offered counselling to come to terms with the loss.
“From 9am to 3pm families can be able to come through. The service will be opened this weekend as well on Saturday and Sunday. There will also be counselling services for bereaved families. Family members or relatives who wish to come and identify their loved ones, they should have their original ID document and the ID of the deceased person or birth certificate. If the deceased is a foreign national, a passport, an asylum seeker certificate,” the department said.
RAMAPHOSA: ‘THIS IS A GREAT TRAGEDY’
President Cyril Ramaphosa, who visited the scene of the Johannesburg CBD fire, has said the incident is a wake-up call for the City of Johannesburg to address the current housing crisis.
The building which caught fire had been illegally occupied, which is a common problem in the CBD.
Ramaphosa told reporters that the building used to be a home for abused women and children, but once the lease expired, it was “hijacked” by illegal landlords who then collected rent from the tenants.
“This is a great tragedy felt by families whose loved ones perished in this terrible manner and our hearts go out to every person who is affected by this disaster,” he said.