SACC to hold memorial service for Johannesburg fire victims


The South African Council of Churches (SACC) in Gauteng will this morning hold a memorial service for the victims of the Albert Street fire in Johannesburg’s city centre.

Last week, a fire gutted a five-storey building, killing over 70 people and leaving scores of others injured, in the illegally occupied building in Marshalltown.

Bishop Dr White Makabe Rakuba, Chairperson of the SACC In Gauteng, also commended the emergency services personnel who did their best to save people from the burning building…

“We’re remembering all those people who have been affected, those who lost lives, those who lost property and those who have been somehow affected. The memorial service starts at 10am this morning at the Central Methodist Church. It is at the corner of Pritchard, and Small street, opposite the high court. The memorial is open to everyone who wants to come. This was a devastating fire, to their best ability, the emergency services did actually respond, unfortunately they could not save everyone.”

Many inner-city buildings are in an advanced state of disrepair around the country.

They are often without water and electricity, dark, forbidding and dangerous.

But they are the places where thousands of people, including immigrants find refuge. Matthew Wilhelm-Solomon has documented the struggles they experience in his book, ‘The Blinded City. Ten years in Inner City Johannesburg.”