Families comb mortuaries following deadly Johannesburg fire

Families comb mortuaries following deadly Johannesburg fire

Families have been searching for the bodies of their loved ones at mortuaries in Johannesburg, South Africa after a fire razed down a building in the city.

At least 76 people lost their lives during the tragedy, according to government reports.

Families are going through difficult times, in attempts to identify bodies at mortuaries since some victims were burnt beyond recognition.

Grif, a Malawian, was among many people who had arrived at the Diepkloof morgue, to search for her two missing sisters.

President Cyril Ramaphosa

He had received a call on Thursday, August 31 about the fire and he started to look for his two sisters at different hospitals.

After searching for the whole day, without success, he changed his mind and extended the search to mortuaries.  

After searching for some time at the Dieplkloof morgue where all the victims had been brought, he identified the body of one of his sisters.

“I have identified the body of my sister, but am still searching for my other sister, although authorities say that about 50 bodies cannot be identified by sight,” he told news reporters.

Panic-stricken Grif noted that he would continue searching for his other missing sister.

According to Grif, the two women were living together in the building that was razed down by fire but he stays in a nearby apartment.

Police had reported that many of the victims were migrants who were not well documented.

Forensic investigators are still at the scene, selecting through burnt materials, although the cause of the fire is still unknown.

The government has promised help to all the victims of the fire tragedy.

Reuters news agency had earlier reported that about 20 Malawians are thought to be among the dead.

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