Building collapse: Identification process to take a while

The South African government has urged families to be patient as the identification process is still underway.

Rescue efforts are underway in Lagos, Nigeria where at least 67 South Africans have been killed after the collapse of a building belonging to the Synagogue Church of All Nations. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - The South African government has appealed to the families of Nigerian victims to be patient and says the identification of the deceased will most likely take a substantial amount of time.

Nine days ago, a six storey guest house at the Synagogue Church of All Nations collapsed, killing at least 84 people and injuring dozens more.

Many of the families of those killed have not yet been notified and continue arriving at OR Tambo International Airport hoping to see them.

The government has sent a team of forensic experts and disaster relief specialists to Nigeria to assist in the process.

International Relations Spokesperson Clayson Monyela says, "The process of finding their true identities is going to take quite a while and the families are aware of this. There are finger prints and DNA samples which are being taken and they will still need to be tested, some in laboratories so it's going to take a while."

Meanwhile, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has promised to launch his own investigation into the cause of the collapse.