A Nigerian coroner on Wednesday said a megachurch run by one of Africa’s best known preachers, TB Joshua, should be prosecuted over a building collapse last year which killed 115 people, most of them South Africans.
The coroner, Oyetade Komolafe, blamed poor construction work for the collapse of a Lagos church guesthouse on Sept. 12, 2014 and said weak foundations led to the disaster.
“Synagogue Church of All Nations should be investigated and prosecuted by the relevant authorities over the (construction) job for not processing the necessary building permit,” Komolafe said in his ruling.
Officials at Joshua’s church could not immediately be reached for comment on the coroner’s finding.
South Africa earlier accused Nigeria of not doing enough to investigate the disaster and said Nigerian authorities did not react quickly enough to rescue those trapped under the rubble.
Joshua’s evangelical Christian megachurch has drawn tens of thousands of followers from acrossAfrica over the last few years amid claims that he has the ability to cure normally incurable ailments.
The regular influx of visitors from abroad for TB Joshua’s services, which can run for up to a week, creates demand for accommodation.