Nigeria collapse: SA families await final repatriation process

Government says it's still unclear how many bodies will be repatriated.

FILE: Rescue efforts underway in Lagos, Nigeria 85 South Africans were killed after the collapse of a building belonging to the Synagogue Church of All Nations. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Government says the last group of families who lost relatives in the Nigerian building collapse are only likely to learn if their loved ones' bodies will be repatriated.

A South African Defence Force (SANDF) aircraft will be leaving Lagos this afternoon.

In September more than a hundred people died, including 85 South Africans, when a guest house belonging to the Synagogue Church of all Nations caved in.

Last year the bodies of 74 South Africans were brought home, as teams worked to identify the remaining 11 victims.

With only a few hours to go before the SANDF C130 aircraft takes off for Lagos, government's Phumla Williams says there's still uncertainty about how many South African bodies will be on the plane.

It appears communication between the two governments has been limited at times, but Williams says they have no reason to doubt the work of their Nigerian counterparts.

The aircraft is expected to land at the Waterkloof Airforce Base at 2am Friday morning.